Board hires interim superintendent, bids Douglas goodbye

Oneonta School Board...

The Oneonta City Board of Education voted unanimously Monday evening to employ Tim Nabors as interim superintendent of Oneonta City Schools during the time a permanent superintendent to replace Michael Douglas is being sought. Douglas resigned, effective July 11.

Terms of the interim contract were $7,000 per month for August and September, grossed up for taxes; and $375 per day for July and October, with an expense allowance for mileage from Union Grove, where Nabors lives, with a cap of $30,000 for the duration of his service. Nabors served as the elected superintendent of Marshall County Schools for two terms from 2007 to 2015, and following his retirement, served as interim superintendent of Jacksonville City Schools in 2016.

Douglas, while averring he had nothing whatsoever to do with his own former principal’s selection, reassured teachers and board members that his style of management would be a very good fit and “just fine” for the Oneonta system.

The board also took steps to initiate a search for a superintendent as a permanent replacement for Douglas, voting to contract with the Alabama Association of School Boards (AASB), which handled the previous superintendent search, to handle this one for a fee of $7,000.

Board chairman Pat Adams used the concluding part of the agenda under Board Recommendations to initiate a discussion of school revenue sources, and the need to enhance them in order to meet the needs of the coming years. Saying he intends for the discussion to be ongoing and transparent to all stakeholders, he introduced what he referred to as three strategic financial options for increasing system revenues:

(1) increasing revenues from sales taxes by increasing the school system’s percentage of the city total by 1 percent, to produce an additional $40,000 per year in proceeds.

(2) increasing non-resident tuition; specifically evaluate possibility of incrementally increasing the total above the current $112,000 annually.

(3) increasing millage rate for ad valorem taxes to produce revenues in the needed range; using rule of thumb that a one mill increase will produce about $70,000 in increased revenues for the city system, Adams said an increase of perhaps 5 mills could produce sufficient revenues to service the debt on a bond of roughly $4 million, which would be dedicated to the system’s major capital project needs in the near future.

Note: Further reporting on aspects of the continuing financial discussion will occur as appropriate.

The board passed Douglas’s last batch of recommendations for Oneonta City Schools, summarized below. The board:

• accepted Douglas’s resignation, effective July 11, 2017.

• accepted the resignation of Amber Russell, middle school and high school physical education teacher, effective immediately.

• approved Jennifer Thomley as high school physical education teacher, with coaching duties to be determined, for the 2017-2018 school year.

• approved James Turner as Oneonta City Schools maintenance worker for the 2017-2018 school year.

• approved Keith Hullett as maintenance supervisor.

• approved contract extension to June 30, 2020, for Lauren Wilson, Oneonta High School principal.

• approved the activity and athletic assignments and supplements for the 2017-2018 school year.

• approved the enrollment of one middle school non-resident student for the 2017-2018 school year.

• approved the enrollment of three high school non-resident students for the 2017-2018 school year.

• accepted the Child Nutrition Program bids for the 2017-2018 school year as follows:

Ice Cream: Mayfield Dairy Farms LLC

Milk: Dean Dairy Holdings/Barber Milk LLC

Produce: Regional Produce Distributors LLC

Bread: Flowers Baking Company of Birmingham LLC