The Harlan Independent School Board discussed a variety of issues on Tuesday, including a possible upcoming energy grant and the collection of taxes.
Superintendent C.D. Morton told the board a grant to help with energy costs is a future possibility.
“I just wanted to make the board aware — this is completely preliminary and nothing is final in any way, shape, form or fashion — if you remember, we agreed to contribute toward the lobbying against the Kentucky Utilities rate hike. There were some concessions made there, and one of those was some money that would be available to schools to do energy savings projects.”
Morton said there may potentially be up to $20,000 available to school districts to do an energy conservation project.
“It could be heating units, lights, right now I think it’s kind of wide open,” Morton said. “Anything that would impact energy reduction.”
Morton said he had several ideas he would share with the board once more information is available on the grant.
Board Chairman Joe Meadors then moved down the agenda to a discussion on tax collection.
“To date we’ve collected a little over 70 percent of our tax bills,” Morton said. “We’re thankful for that, and want to continue to publicly petition folks.”
Morton said there is still time for people to pay their tax bill before penalties are added.
“We will at some point later this year turn those over to Harlan County Clerk Donna Hoskins, at which point there will be fees and penalties applied,” Morton said. “We are still taking payments. We generally collect around 94 percent of our taxes. Sometimes its 96 percent.”
Morton advised the board he had provided them with a list of people yet to pay their tax.
“If you look through, you’ll notice the majority of those are not heavy hitters,” Morton said. “They’re several that are a couple thousand dollars, but most of them are $200 to $300. My hope is those will come in. Again, we want to let the public and community know how much we appreciate them paying their taxes.”
Morton said the tax money impacts the school’s general fund.
“It helps fund teachers, aides, field trips and all of those things,” Morton said. “We’d certainly like to get the remainder of those bills paid.”
Reach Joe P. Asher at 606-909-4132 or on Twitter @joe_hde