2011 Mint Hill Election Results

For Mayor

Ted Biggers  1823 votes

Jean Bonner  644 votes

 

For Board of Commissioners

Lloyd Austin  1,685

Mickey Ellington  1,651

Brenda McRae  1,303

Tina Ross  1,409

Chris McAvoy  1,155

Eric Random  813

Derrick Snyder  547

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Two Republicans, two different opinions on CMS budget requests

It was a busy day for Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools June 8. In one morning, school officials announced they had enough money to keep most of the full time positions they thought they may lose. And then came
the second bombshell: Peter Gorman announced he is resigning as superintendent and taking a job with News Corporation in New York.
Just one day before, the Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners voted to give CMS half of the $50 million the Board of Education had requested. The board voted 5-4 along party lines to give CMS $26 million in additional funds for the next school year. It was unclear to the Mecklenburg County board how much, if any, CMS would receive in state funding.The Mint Hill Times
However, the $26 million was not enough to cover the three most important items that CMS said it would fund first if it got additional money.
Gorman said that to keep class sizes lower, maintain student weighted staffing, and keep support positions such as literacy facilitators and media specialists, they would need $34 million. However, CMS’s
announcement last week noted the $26 million would indeed cover the total cost of keeping 570 positions.
“We will use the $26 million just as we told the county that we would,” said Chief Operating Officer Hugh Hattabaugh. “The $26 million will mean we don’t have to increase class sizes and we don’t have to
change our weighted student-staffing formula. Together those two items add up to $24 million – and we’ll apply the remaining $2 million to the next item in the tier, which is support staff in schools.”
While teachers who had already been given pink slips were delighted at the news that they would keep their jobs, Mecklenburg County Commissioner Bill James, who represents the Mint Hill area, called foul.
“The whole thing was kabuki theater to whip up support from soccer moms,” James said this week. Continue reading

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Task Force recommendations puts Mint Hill library in jeopardy

The Future of the Library Task Force presented its final recommendations to the Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners and the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library Board of Trustees on Monday. It concluded that the library was not overfunded in the past few years, and that the level of service and costs are on par with similar-sized cities.

The task force also recommended that if the library cannot find an extra $2 million in its next budget, staff from some of the branches could be shifted to the regional libraries to allow for more hours of service. For Mint Hill, it could mean closing the library if the county can’t come up with the funding to hire more employees for regional branches. Continue reading

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County could save $10 million with new purchasing strategy

The Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners were presented with an outline today of changes it could make in the way it purchases goods and services that could save the County upwards of $10 million a year. The presentation was made by County Manager Harry Jones at the Board of County Commissioner’s Budget and Public Policy Workshop
“We’re going to be doing purchasing in a completely new way,” said Jones. “Taxpayers could see a $2.60 return on every dollar invested through this business case.”
The County is working with Deloitte Consulting, which will invest a portion of its fees to pay the cost to implement the business case and receive payment based on the savings achieved.
Strategic sourcing is a method of purchasing goods and services at negotiated best prices consistently across the organization. Examples include timing the purchase of certain commodities for when the prices are at the lowest during the year. Based on the County’s current purchasing practices, Deloitte estimates that this first phase of work can result in annual cost savings of up to $10 million.
Continue reading

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CMS equity report: What are the per pupil costs at individual schools?

Sometimes it seems like the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools are not forthcoming with financial information. That’s understandable. Education data can be extremely complicated and confusing. CMS is attempting to pull back the curtain an inch or two with the recent release of its 2010 Equity Report. What schools receive the most money per pupil? Here’s your chance to compare and contrast every school in the system. To view the full report, go to the CMS website.

“The rationale is that all that information is in the CMS Equity Report,” explained Lauren Bell, the district’s public information officer told the Carolina Journal. “Now you can just go to one place where the data is easy to understand, explained in common language, and find anything you need to know about that school.”

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Library’s Charles Brown will step down as Director

Charles Brown, who has served as Director of Libraries for the past seven years, has announced plans to leave the system at the end of the fiscal year in June. Brown took over the library when it was still flush with cash from the 1990s and early 2000s boom in Mecklenburg County.  Because of a slow economy, however, funds dried up, and the library was forced to make major changes from top to bottom.

Brown will be replaced in the interim by Vick Phillips, an executive who once served as chief of staff for former Bank of America Chairman and CEO Hugh McColl Read the full press release after the break. Continue reading

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