Steamboat Education Fund Board to hear $1.4M in requests tonight |

Steamboat Education Fund Board to hear $1.4M in requests tonight

Jack Weinstein

— The Education Fund Board will hear first readings tonight for technology and capital funding requests totaling a little more than $1.4 million.

Routt County's three public school districts and several local community groups presented their initial requests last month to Fund Board members. The requests have changed slightly since then.

Since January, the districts and community groups have formally presented their requests to the Fund Board's Educational Excellence and Technology/Capi­tal commissions. Each commission determines which requests to bring back to the Fund Board for potential final approval after two readings. The Fund Board is the entity responsible for allocating the city of Steamboat Springs' half-cent sales tax for education.

Tonight's meeting is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. at the George P. Sauer Human Serv­ices Center on Seventh Street.

"In the first reading, what we're doing is hearing a little more detail about the requests beyond what we heard last month," Fund Board President Kristi Brown said.

Brown said Fund Board members likely will ask a lot of questions about the requests. She said officials from the Steamboat Springs, Hayden and South Routt school districts should be on hand tonight.

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The Educational Excellence Commission will present nearly $1.4 million in first readings at a special meeting at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 16. Both commissions will present second readings to the Fund Board in March.

Brown said at the meeting next week, the Fund Board could set initial allocation amounts for each commission after hearing an updated sales tax projection tonight.

In December, Fund Board members tentatively set a 2011-12 budget of $2.5 million. It included $80,000 for the Fund Board's grant writer, who serves all three school districts; $30,000 to cover administrative costs; and another $50,000 for a new innovation grant for which teachers can apply for funding.

That leaves $2.34 million for the districts and community groups. The Fund Board's 2010-11 budget was $2.31 million, which included $110,000 to cover the grant writer and administrative costs.

With about $2.8 million in total requests, more than $400,000 will go unfunded.

"Cuts will definitely need to be made," Brown said, "but I think that's a good thing to keep this a competitive process and to make sure the projects and programs we fund are the best use of education fund dollars."

— To reach Jack Weinstein, call 970-871-4203 or e-mail

Funding requests

■ Steamboat Springs School District

Technology staff: $396,787

Hardware: $363,500

Network: $100,000

Software: $124,213

Data analysis: $20,000

Training: $10,000

Online database: $18,000

Maintenance: $27,500

Library software: $15,000

Student Information System: $25,000

Total: $1.1 million

■ Hayden School District

Technology support person: $49,839

Software license: $7,100

Reading software: $3,000

SMART Board grant match: $25,000

Desktop computers: $15,445

Adobe software: $13,999

Auditorium upgrades: $25,500

Total: $139,883

■ South Routt School District

SMART Board grant match: $86,250

Desktop computers: $30,000

Reading software: $5,498

Antivirus software: $3,000

Science chemical storage and fume hood: $16,500

Heated underground walkway between high and middle schools: $34,595

Total: $175,843

■ Soroco Ram Fans Booster Club

TVs and computers for high and elementary school common areas: $1,900

Total technology/capital requests: $1,417,626

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