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Home News-Telegram News Annual Audit: SSISD given clean bill of financial health

Annual Audit: SSISD given clean bill of financial health

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Sulphur Springs Independent School District’s annual financial audit came back with no deficiencies in financial practices and was approved by trustees Monday night.

“You do have a good, fiscally sound district,” said Mike Taylor with Rutherford, Taylor and Company, P.C., the firm hired to conduct the required annual audit for the fiscal year ending Aug. 31, 2013.

Taylor presented the 63-page annual financial and compliance report to trustees at Monday night’s regular January school board meeting. 

He reviewed a few different pages, pointing out that the firm’s “unmodified opinion” after spending a week at SSISD in the summer and another in the fall evaluating district figures, showed no deficiencies on “Texas Education Agency mandated compliance checks of the district.”

Taylor said the evaluation of federal funds also showed all requirements met.

“If you did have a problem, it would be on page 12 and stated there. The answer is no,” Taylor told trustees.

He said that one management problem noted in the previous year’s report had been corrected. Taylor pointed out a $7.9 million bond was refinanced at a rate that over life of the bond will ultimately save the district $1.4 million.

For every $1 the district spends, 52-cents goes toward classroom instruction. Ten cents of every dollar goes to debt service. 

The only other items approved by the school board at Monday night’s meeting were the consent agenda which includes December tax credits and supplements, delinquent tax collections, and financial statements and bills payable; the December board meeting minutes; and four staff matters.

The board also voted to extend Superintendent Michael Lamb’s three-year contract for another year.

The board, at the conclusion of a very long executive session Monday night, voted to accept the resignation of Douglas Intermediate School physical education aide Charla Law; Christina Davis was approved to fill that position.

Trustees also gave the go-ahead to hire Christy Boyer as a special education aide at Sulphur Springs Elementary and Tara Francis as eighth grade history teacher. Francis has been serving as a substitute teacher since school resumed; she was officially hired to fill the vacancy created at the semester break with Susan Reynolds’ retirement.

The school board was recognized during the meeting with gift baskets, posters and other items submitted by district campuses in appreciation of their service in observance of School Board Recognition Month.

“Thank you for all the work you’ve done,” Lamb told the board. “We want to let them know we really appreciate all their work and all they do. They give so much of their time — it’s like a second or third job they stay so late sometimes in this job. They get no pay for this. In my line, I’ve heard a lot of horror stories about bad boards. We have a wonderful board, a wonderful team of eight. I couldn’t ask for better support.”

The culinary arts students at Sulphur Springs High School also prepared in their newly-opened kitchen a meal of pork tenderloin, glazed carrots, broccoli and rice, with a side of fruit salad and Italian creme cake for dessert. Three members of the culinary cuisine class —  Kara Garner, Deketra Moseley and Destiny Watkins — and two teachers, Nancy Reese and Belinda Brown, served the meal.

Garner, on behalf of the class, offered thanks to the board and administrators for the updated kitchen, which will allow the SSHS culinary arts students to prepare for Family, Career and Community Leaders of America Regional Star Events competition on Feb. 27. 

Reese said more than 60 students are enrolled in culinary classes this year. Without the new kitchen that meets the required codes, the students would not be able to practice or compete in Star Events




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