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COUNTY COUNCIL SET TO VOTE ON SCHOOL BOARD RESOLUTION

THE BALTIMORE SUN

The County Council is scheduled to vote tonight on a resolution to deny the school board extra money until it begins spending reforms that do not affect services to students.

The proposed resolution has raised the ire of school officials since its introduction two weeks ago. They said the resolution's sponsors, Councilwoman Diane R. Evans,R-Arnold, Councilmen George Bachman, D-Linthicum, and Carl G. "Dutch" Holland, R-Pasadena, are "misinformed" about the school board's finances.

The council created problems by authorizing the hiring of more teachers but not approving enough money to pay them, school officials claim. And though the board has implemented cost-cutting measures, they said it is all but impossible to avoid affecting front-line services for children.

Tonight's public hearing on the non-binding resolution could be subdued, Bachman said, since school officials and the three council members vented their differences at a meeting Thursday.

"I think most of the fury is more or less behind us," he said.

The school board traditionally has asked the council for -- and received -- a fourth quarter transfer of money from one school category toanother. This year, the board anticipates an $8 million deficit.

Bachman, Evans and Holland want to end fourth quarter transfers except for unforeseen expenditures and revenues. Of the remaining four council members, Maureen Lamb, D-Annapolis, and Edward Middlebrooks, D-Severn, said they felt the resolution was well-intended but didn't take into consideration the school board's problems.

The council's agenda includes a number of other items tonight:

* A bill creating the Annapolis Landing Shore Erosion Control District.

* A bill authorizing money for the Pinewood Gravity Sewage Project.

* A resolution reappointing members of the Severn River Commission.

The meeting is set for 7:30 p.m. at the Arundel Center on Calvert Street.

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