Lawmakers Eye Education Budget

Chairmen of the House and Senate education committees disagree on what to do with so-called “rainy day funds” of local school districts.

That is money that districts have been setting aside from their district maintenance revenues for emergency expenses. Some districts set aside fiver percent per year, for example, to be prepared for something unexpected.

Rep. Mike Chaney recently suggested districts use that money instead of laying off teachers.

Meridian did not issue pink slips to teachers, but is absorbing a potential cut in state funding through other means. However, superintendent Sylvia Autry said spending the district maintenance revenue on salaries would be dangerous, since it's the only emergency funding districts have.

Lawmakers must reach a compromise on the budget by Tuesday or risk prolonging the current legislative session.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.