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Stories Added - February 2009
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TISD could get $565,000 from stimulus bill
Trinity Standard - February 2009
TRINITY – Trinity schools are expected to receive an additional $565,000 later this year from the federal economic stimulus bill.
President Barak Obama signed the economic stimulus act into law last week in Denver. It includes $787 billion in federal spending and tax cuts designed to push the U.S. economy out of recession.
According to Mary Scott Nabers, president and CEO of Strategic Partnerships, Inc. of Austin, the bill is expected to provide about $4 billion to the state’s public schools.
Trinity County school districts are expected to receive $1,253,000 of that amount, with an estimated $565,000 coming to the Trinity Independent School District.
Other county schools and their estimated stimulus funds include: Groveton ISD, $351,000; Centerville ISD, $194,000; and Apple Springs ISD, $143,000.
“The stimulus bill wheels are turning in D.C. and in Texas,” Nabers said. “Officials throughout the state are just waiting for guidelines about how to access the funding and how it can be sent.”
Strategic Partnerships, Inc., is an Austin-based research and procurement consulting firm that is tracking the funding flows in Texas.
Nabers said some of the stimulus money is allocated by formula and other funds will come down in local schools in the form of grants.
School districts are expected to spend a large amount of the funds for technology, equipment, energy enhancement and construction, she added.
TISD Superintendent Dr. Bobby Rice said he currently does not expect to receive the money until sometime around August.
“The way I understand the program will operate is that approximately 50 percent of the money will have to go to special education and approximately 50 percent will be spent on Title I programs,” he said.
Rice noted that because of the high number of students who qualify for free or reduced lunches, TISD is considered to be a Title I district.
“That means that we can spend the money for just about anything, from instructional supplies for core subjects such as math, science and language arts; to science lab equipment,” he said.
“The dollar amounts we are seeing so far are all estimates so we don’t know for sure how much money we will be receiving and we don’t know for sure when we will receive it.
“I’m glad to have an opportunity to help our students with this money, but I’m not going to start spending it before we see a check,” the superintendent added.
Nabers said that once the money is released, a federal Web site, www.recovery.gov would allow citizens to see how it is being spent.