By Ian Faulkner, Staff Writer
Friday, May 10, 2013 —
Stanly County School Board Chairman Melvin Poole was required to cast his vote to break a tie at Tuesday’s board meeting.
The vote was on whether to reimburse the Endy Ele-mentary PTO for $3,500. The organization recently purchased and installed playground equipment.
A representative from Endy PTO appeared before the facilities committee at an earlier date and made the request, which was brought before the board Tuesday night by Board Member Grant Allen. The request had already been approved by the finance committee when it was brought before the board.
The amount requested for reimbursement would cover the costs for installation and grading at Endy.
Endy PTO raised more than $11,000 for its playground equipment and only requested a partial amount for reimbursement.
“I understand in the past that the school system has paid to relocate some playground equipment from the closed schools. I guess where I’m a little concerned is we’re being asked to reimburse a PTA,” said Board Member Mitzie Almond.
She explained her reasoning that she wanted to give fair treatment to every organization that deals with the school board.
“I just think that we might want to consider what we’re doing here and if in fact other PTAs or PTOs might start coming and asking us for reimbursements,” Almond said.
“It’s not unprecedented to do this,” Allen said.
“Well I guess that’s my question, has this been done in the past? How often and how many? Because as a principal I don’t think I remember reimbursing our PTO for anything,” Board Member Dr. Angela Mills said.
Poole said this has happened several times, but typically the PTO will approach the board ahead of time.
“I think the boards in the past sort of looked at it as a way of encouraging the community to contribute and participate, rather than come in and ask for the whole amount, they come in and say ‘Can you help us with this?’ ” Poole said.
Board Member Mike Barbee informed the board that Endy PTO did approach the board for help on installation of the playground equipment.
Allen reiterated that the PTO spent more than $7,000, not counting the reimbursement request, and expressed that this was a great achievement for a PTO organization.
Chance, Allen, Chandler and Barbee all voted in the affirmative for the reimbursement. Mills, Almond, Watson and Lowder voted against the motion.
The chairman of the board of education votes only in the instance of a tie, and in this case Poole voted in favor of granting the reimbursement to Endy’s PTO.
The motion will require a budget amendment to account for the reallocation of school board funds for the purpose of the reimbursement.
The next regularly scheduled board of education meeting will be June 4 in the Commons Meeting Room.
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