Wake Commissioners Walk a Fine Line Between Being Fiscally Cautious and Fulfilling Campaign Promises

Wake Commissioners Walk a Fine Line Between Being Fiscally Cautious and Fulfilling Campaign Promises

There’s a thin line between being fiscally cautious and fulfilling campaign promises to support public schools to the hilt, members of the Wake County Board of Commissioners learned Monday.

At issue at a commission work session was the gap between the $45 million in new money the school system originally proposed and the $16 million—plus the schools’ reserve fund—that county manager Jim Hartmann has proposed to fund the system in 2017–18.

Wake County schools have no taxing authority, so there’s a yearly exchange of opinions on how much the Board of Commissioners should include for schools out of the county budget. At Monday’s meeting, commissioners seemed acutely aware that several of them had been elected because of their advocacy for public schools.

“In my estimation, the public has already spoken about what the priorities are,” said commissioner Greg Ford, a former Wake County principal.…

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