School Board passes motion asking City Council to rescind funding decision

JACKSON, Tenn. — Just one day after the Jackson City Council voted to keep nearly $12 million in their budget they have been giving to the Jackson-Madison County School System, the School Board gathered together to discuss their options.

“As an example, there was a statement made that the city is paying for nine out of every 10 kids that attend school,” JMCSS School Board Chairman Bob Alvey said as the board went through the information presented at Thursday’s City Council meeting. “And if I look at a $100 million project and they are bringing in $12 million, then obviously there is some kind of mismatch there.”

UPDATE: The school system issued a news release Friday afternoon outlining the School Board’s resolution to submit the request to the City Council. You can read the statement in full here.

On Thursday, the council voted 6 to 1, with one abstaining and one not present, to keep $12 million in sales tax money it currently gives the district.

“I don’t know where they got those figures, and I just wanted some figures, some back-up documentation, so I could see where their figures came from,” County Finance Director Mike Nichols said.

Friday morning, School Board members discussed how this resolution is going to impact the school system, with county leaders also present.

“This county will fund education, and it will meet the maintenance effort cut and dry. There is no question about that,” Madison County Mayor Jimmy Harris said. “The question is where the funds are going to come from.”

After discussing questions for legal counsel, the board voted unanimously on a motion asking the City Council to rescind their decision.

Alvey said they aren’t sure if the board can or will take legal action, but they should know more after their meeting next week.