Manatee Co. School District finances improving

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MANATEE COUNTY – A Florida Association of District School Superintendent consultant says Manatee County School District finances are improving.

The Manatee County School District’s reserve fund balance topped $25 million last year, just four years after it fell to negative $7.5 million.

The Herald-Tribune reports fiscal consultant Jim Hamilton said the rebound is “remarkable” considering state funding levels and ever-increasing mandates.

Hamilton, a consultant with the Florida Association of District School Superintendents, is a former deputy superintendent in Hillsborough and has been advising Florida’s school boards on their finances for the past ten years. His comments came as encouragement to the board as it seeks greater financial accountability.

On Tuesday, February 13, the board will discuss establishing a finance oversight committee, an initiative that has become a major priority leading up to a March 20 Special Election on raising property taxes in Manatee to generate more revenue for schools.

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