There is no question that our elected county commissioners and our school board members will have to make some serious decisions in order to balance their budgets this year.
Unless you feel that added taxes are the way go, their decisions are going to further strain services and our improving education outlook.
There have been some stories in this past week's paper that have talked about how different groups are already cut to the proverbial bone.
We don't doubt that the budgets for all departments in our county are at the point.
To that end, we would like to address the following:
- The Newton County Recreation Commission has asked for a $300,000 increase for next year's budget.
We have as fine a recreation department as there is in Georgia. Our facilities are first rate and Tommy Hailey has done an excellent job managing our counties recreation resources.
If these were different times and the county was flush with bucks, $300,000 would be a drop in the bucket, but these are hard times.
In order for the recreation department to maintain our facilities, the folks that use them are going to have to pay for their use.
It's the fair and right thing to do, but this suggestion is going to be met with howls of disagreement, especially by parents of children who are using these facilities.
Of course it is, but it is the only fair way to keep our recreation facilities top rate and functional.
- There was also a story about the new Career Academy opening up in September instead of next year.
That's good. We feel this education facility will be the pride and joy of our community.
It is going to be a stretch and major commitment of faith in its future success to keep this facility up and running, though.
We think this academy should do one thing and one thing only: Provide the education that will help our children have a running start in keeping up with the world.
We have already heard representatives from different parent groups wanting to add other distractions to this great idea of educating our children.
We ask the school board to keep the operations of the academy focused and not allow it to be a catch all for other kinds of distracting activity that will not only run up costs but distract from its noble goal.