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Schools to benefit from sales tax

By By SHERRY DIGMON
Advance Staff Writer
Atmore schools will benefit from almost $300,000 in tax revenues next year.
The Atmore Revenue Commission presented its 2000-2001 budget to the Atmore City Council at Tuesday's meeting.
Commission member Murray Johnson told the council the budget for the four Atmore schools will be $291,516.97. These funds come from a portion of a one-cent sales tax.
To determine the budget, the commission met with all four principals – Beth Drew, Rachel Patterson; David Nolin, A.C. Moore; Herbert Payne, Escambia County Middle School; and Jerry Smith, Escambia County High School. All four were in attendance at the meeting as was Superintendent Buck Powell.
Johnson presented the following budget:
Rachel Patterson, $70,062.99 – funds one teacher, one aide, eight computers, copy machine lease and scanner.
A.C. Moore, $80,397.99 – funds one teacher, one library aide, copier lease, equipment and technology maintenance, incentives for the Accelerated Reader program, incentives for SAT 9, 15 computers for classrooms and instructional materials.
Escambia County Middle School, $67,537.99 – funds one teacher, choral music and equipment, technology equipment maintenance and replacement, copy machine lease, student incentive program, office supplies, 10 computers, band instructional supplies, summer librarian (four weeks), computer software and Accelerated Reader update and Star Reading program.
Escambia County High School, $73,518 – funds one teacher, one athletic director (summer), copier leases, academic incentive program, band supplies, music supplies, drama equipment, office supplies, seven computers, instructional materials, video equipment and an auditorium sound system.
Before the council approved the budget, Councilman John Watkins said, "This tax is supposed to be non-political. It's supposed to be distributed non-political. We want to be sure it stays non-political. It must stay non-political."
Mayor Howard Shell said the ad valorem tax and the sales tax put more than a half million dollars in the schools last year.
With the holidays coming up, Johnson urged Atmore residents to shop at home.
Woodrow McCorvey and Jeannie McGehee are also members of the commission. McGehee has moved to South Carolina and her replacement will be discussed at the next council meeting.