Horry County School District wants 16% increase on its more than $500M budget

Horry County School District wants 16% increase on its more than $500M budget (Image 1)

The Horry County School District’s proposal for next year’s budget is $91 million more than the budget for last year; a majority of that increase comes from its new building plan.

The total budget proposal for next year is $655,088,152.

This current budget year the total was $563,129,100.

School officials say the majority of the increase will go towards taking care of their old buildings — and opening new schools.

A large portion of the budget increase is in the building fund.

Horry County Schools proposed $122 million dollars for its building fund next year; up more than $70 million dollars from last year.

Nearly $100 million of those dollars of the building fund proposal would go towards new school buildings, replacements, and renovations.

Those numbers might seem high, but they are only part of a much larger number that has already been agreed upon.

The district already agreed on a $451 million dollar school building plan and this increase would begin to pay for it.

“Our needs are current so we need to start building those buildings now and in order to build those buildings is through the issuance of debt,” said John Gardner.

Gardner is Horry County School’s Chief Financial Officer.

He says the district is proposing receiving $74 million dollars in bond money.

However, that money would carry nearly $16 million in interest.

That means the district would have to pay back $90 million over the next eight and a half years.

Gardner says this option would save taxpayers money.

“There will be no change in that for the tax payer. Basically what we’ll be doing, issuing a bond, that will be paid off with the penny sales tax and debt service millage,” he said.

Gardner says other the debt service fund, the bond payback would not have much impact on future budgets.

He says final decision on the budget will need to be made before July 1st.

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