City of Manassas

The following were among actions taken at a special Aug. 8 meeting of the Manassas School Board. For more information, call 361-0166.

BUDGET -- Superintendent of Schools James Upperman proposed a hiring freeze for almost 28 teaching and other staff positions and cuts of 10 to 20 percent in other areas of the schools' fiscal 1991 budget to prepare for possible cuts in state funds to localities.

Gov. L. Douglas Wilder has warned that funding to localities may be cut to offset a deficit in the state budget, which could amount to $1.4 billion before July 1993. Wilder is expected to announce the funding cuts tomorrow.

To offset the possibility of cuts in state funding for Manassas, Mayor John Weber urged city and school officials in early July to develop a $2 million reserve fund for the city's $54.2 million budget, which went into effect July 1.

The mayor proposed that school officials put $1.2 million of the schools' $31.4 million budget in reserve, and that city officials put $800,000 in reserve. The schools receive about 60 percent of the city's entire budget.

The school superintendent's proposal calls for 20 teaching positions to remain vacant during the school year that begins Sept. 4. The vacancies would increase the student-to-teacher ratio slightly in some classrooms, but only one class -- an electronics class at Osbourn High School -- would be jeopardized. The electronics teaching position has been vacant since the end of the last school year.

Some clerical and school bus driver positions also would not be filled.

Keeping the positions vacant would save the schools $656,025 in salaries and benefits in fiscal 1991.

The superintendent's proposal also calls for cuts of 10 to 20 percent in other areas of the schools budget, such as scaling back purchases of supplies throughout the school system and reducing the use of outside services, such as printing.

The school superintendent said the schools could eliminate about $180,000 in capital expenditures items, such as office equipment, and about $162,157 on prepayment of the schools' insurance premium for the 1991-92 school year.

The school board is scheduled to vote on the school superintendent's proposal at its Aug. 21 meeting.