Magazine article American Libraries

School Board Blinks in Funding Showdown

Magazine article American Libraries

School Board Blinks in Funding Showdown

Article excerpt

The Kanawha County (W.Va.) school board narrowly approved September 5 the restoration of $2.3 million from its FY2007-08 state revenues to the Kanawha County Public Library. The 3-2 decision overruled school Superintendent Ron Duerring's unilateral decision a month earlier to keep all the money for public school needs. "I think mostly we're relieved," remarked KCPL Director Alan Engelbert in the September 8 Charleston Gazette after learning that he was not about to lose one-third of his budget after all.

However, the fiscal cavalry that rode to the rescue brandished a caveat: Three board members agreed to release the funds only if, by July 1, 2008, the state legislature reworked a library-funding formula affecting nine West Virginia counties, including Kanawha.

"We didn't just jump on this horse and ride it through the night," board member Bill Raglin said before voting to keep the funds, according to the September 5 Charleston Daily Mail. "We couldn't get anybody in the legislative rank to listen to this issue. …

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