Dougherty County School Board member David Maschke, left, and DCSS Executive Finance Director Kenneth Dyer look over a document during a School Board meeting Wednesday at Radium Springs Elementary School.
ALBANY, Ga. -- Dougherty County School Superintendent Joshua Murfree said he would drive to Atlanta this morning to hand-deliver a $134,262 check to the Georgia Department of Education, meeting the state's Friday deadline to reimburse questionable Title I Part A expenditures by the District.
Murfree made his announcement at the beginning of a School Board work session Wednesday at Radium Springs Elementary School.
"I'll be taking a check to Atlanta myself," Murfree said.
A state education probe into the district's Title I expenditures began in late May after consultant contracts worth $109,000 to Darrell Sabbs and Associates and motivational speaker Joseph Washington came to light.
State education officials contended the two contracts -- $91,000 to Sabbs and $18,000 to Washington -- were not allowable Title I Part A expenditures and demanded reimbursement by Sept. 28.
At stake was more than $11 million in Title I funding that the state threatened to withhold from the county for the federal government's Fiscal year 2013, which begins Monday.
The repayment will remove that threat.
"We still hope to get some of that money back on appeal," DCSS Executive Finance Director Kenneth Dyer said.
The situation has forced the DCSS to take another look at and to tighten its consultants contract policy. In addition, the education department will require that the district hire two people of the state's choice to oversee DCSS's federal and Free and Reduced Meals application programs.
In action items, the board unanimously approved the system's FY13 Title I budget, with the provision that the person DCSS hires to oversee the Title I program reviews and approves the budget.