Dougherty County School System Executive Director of Finance and Operations Ken Dyer said Tuesday that the school system had put aside $700,000 in reserve in case automatic budget cuts occur Friday. The cuts would take place if the government cannot reach a deal to avoid sequestration.
ALBANY, Ga. -- With $85 billion in across-the-board federal budget cuts, known as a sequester, set to take place Friday, Dougherty County School System Executive Director of Finance and Operations Ken Dyer says the district has a plan in place to help weather potential federal funding cuts.
"Where we will feel the effects of sequestration will be in our federal Title I funding, possibly $800,000 in federal funding," Dyer said. "But in anticipation, we set aside nearly $700,000 earlier in the event it happened."
Dyer said the system has enough in reserves to get by in the short-term, but if the budget dispute between the White House and Congress drags on, some programs could be affected.
"If no agreement is reached, it could be a problem with some of our summer programs," Dyer said. "We'd planned on using that money for our summer academic enrichment program."
"I am very concerned about the impact sequestration will have on Georgia if no agreement is reached," U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop Jr., D-Albany, said. "We could see significant cuts in Title I grants for the education of disadvantaged children: Impact Aid, IDEA funding for children with disabilities, Adult Basic and Literacy Education State Grants and Head Start.
"These reductions would have a devastating impact on educating our state's children, improving our schools and helping Georgians reach their full potential. Clearly, it is vital that an agreement be reached to avert sequestration and prevent these education cuts from taking place."
In addition to education spending, sequestration will also hit the Department of Defense's wallet.
The automatic budget cuts would force the pentagon to furlough much of its 800,000 civilian workers for more than three weeks and delay military maintenance work.
"Management at Marine Corps Logistics Command has been meeting with employees to discuss the potential impact of sequestration on the individual members of the work force," MCLB-Albany wrote in a release issued earlier this week. "Our leadership is committed to providing our employees with the most complete and current information we have available, and we will continue to maintain open and active lines of communication throughout these circumstances."
President Barack Obama plans to meet with top Congressional leaders on Friday in a last-ditch effort to resolve the impasse.