Saturday, September 14, 2013

Gloucester, VA School Board Ready To Contract Construction Without Funds

According to the Gloucester, Mathews Gazette Journal, The Gloucester School Board is ready to sign a contract with Oyster Point Construction of Newport News.  Problem is, the School board does not have the money in any account to do this.

  From what we have seen of the State law, the county is ready to move forward in violation of the laws and they could care less in our view.

Let's once again look at those laws.

§ 15.2-1238. Certification of sufficient funds.
Except in emergency, no order for delivery on a contract or open market order for supplies or contractual services for any county department or agency shall be awarded until the chief financial officer has certified that the unencumbered balance in the appropriation concerned, in excess of all unpaid obligations, is sufficient to defray the cost of such order.

15.2-1239. Orders and contracts in violation of article.
If any department or agency of the county government purchases or contracts for any supplies or contractual services contrary to the provisions of this article or the rules and regulations made thereunder, such order or contract shall be void and the head of such department or agency shall be personally liable for the costs of such order or contract.

§ 22.1-175.5. Capital School Projects Fund.
A. The governing body of any locality which is awarded a grant pursuant to this chapter may authorize the local treasurer or fiscal officer, by ordinance or resolution, to create a separate escrow account upon the books of the locality, as described in this section. Upon the adoption of such ordinance or resolution, the treasurer of the locality shall place such grant awards into this account.

B. The escrow account shall be known as the "County/City/Town of ____________ Capital School Projects Fund." All principal deposited to such fund, together with all income from or attributable to the fund, shall be used solely for (i) construction, additions, renovations, including retrofitting and enlarging public school buildings, infrastructure, including technology infrastructure, and site acquisition for public school buildings and facilities or (ii) debt service payments, or a portion thereof, for any such projects completed in the previous ten years if so designated. No disbursement from the fund may be made except upon specific appropriation by the governing body in accordance with applicable law. If a locality establishes such a fund and designates any portion of the funds deposited therein to pay debt service for (i) any general obligation of the locality held by the Virginia Public School Authority or (ii) any Literary Fund loan, the locality shall obtain an opinion of bond counsel that designation of funds to pay debt service on obligations described in clauses (i) and (ii) hereof does not adversely impact the tax-exempt status of such obligations.

C. All grant awards deposited in the fund, including all income from or attributable to such fund, shall be deemed public funds of the locality and shall be subject to all limitations upon deposit and investment provided by general law, including, but not limited to, the Virginia Security for Public Deposits Act (§ 2.2-4400 et seq.). Income, dividends, distributions, and grants accruing to the fund shall be retained in such fund and shall be expended only in accordance with the terms of this section.

D. Nothing in this section shall be deemed or construed to authorize a school board or school division to receive, hold or invest funds in its own name, nor to expend funds in the absence of a specific appropriation by the governing body of the locality in accordance with applicable law.

Now here is what we know, the county has not yet sold bonds to raise the money needed for the school construction for the new swamp school.  We all know this.  How can the School board, without having the proper funds move forward with committing to a contract when they do not have the money to do so?  Do you think they really care?  

Let's dig further into the local enquirer news story, the school board has a shortage of expected funding for hardening an area of the new swamp school.  What is hardening?  They are going to take a section of the school and ensure it is built to a code where that section of the school will withstand a category 2 hurricane.  But wait.  Why isn't the entire school being built to that standard?  A category 2 storm is what comes through here pretty much every year.  Isabel was a category 3.  Schools and homes withstood that for the most part.  But the school, according to the paper, will only be hardened in one area to withstand a 2.  That means we go back to the first step to rebuild another new school after the next big storm?

  Are these people serious?  They are already wasting your tax dollars on a new school that is not needed except by a local attorney who wants to make money off of his property across the street from what we see.  (That is only our opinion at this time).   Over 1,000 acres owned by local attorney Breckenridge Ingles.  

  They played a shell game on everyone telling us they need 5 million dollars for school repairs.  Money they had but spent it instead clearing out and refinishing another school they closed and are going to reopen as office space for themselves.  How is that about the children?  Are we all being held at gunpoint by these people?  Don't look to the local paper to figure this out for you, they know about it and won't cover it for any reason.  Instead they will just feed you the official spin.

The School Board is holding a ground breaking ceremony open to the public, September, 24th, 2013 at 4:00 PM.  Board of Supervisors expected to attend.  We recommend everyone show up with all the cash you have and just give all of it to them and plan on giving plenty more.  There is no reason for you to expect to keep any of it anymore.  If you do not have cash, bring your credit cards and allow them to max them out.  Do you have any investments?  Bring those too and be prepared to hand them over.  Title on your car free and clear?  Bring it to them and let them take out a title loan in your name.  Maybe they will have representatives from the payday loan places and you can sign for a loan letting the county take the cash while you get the payback note.  Bring your gold and silver or any other valuables you have and let County Officials pawn it in your name.  

  Sorry, they are not accepting your children though, they cost money to maintain.  Just send them to the swamp school for fun and games with all the frogs and snakes.  You might even get them back at the end of the day if the school does not play SS Titanic first and sink back into the swamp groundwater.

Don't take your eye off your loved ones if you attend.  No one want's another occurrence like the one above to happen again.

Our own recommendation to Gloucester Officials is do not delay in signing, sign the contract as fast as possible.  Then read the law afterward.  No one is watching.  Really. Take our word for it.

We are not lawyers and none of this is to be considered legal advice.  Only a COMPETENT attorney can advice you on legal matters.  Finding a competent attorney is another issue however.  Maybe we can all look to the Governor's race?  Yes that was a joke.

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