Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria Carstarphen said even with the judge's order allowing tax bills to be sent her district will proceed with plans to borrow up to $175 million to pay its expenses. She doesn't expect the district to borrow that full amount -- which would cost APS an additional estimated $700,000 in interest and fees.
Carstarphen said she’ll recommend the school board proceed with a short-term loan and “use only as much as we need.” APS must repay the loan by the end of December.
The Atlanta district doesn’t plan to make the kind of belt-tightening moves it was forced to do last year, when tax bills also were delayed. Last year, the Atlanta school district put some employees on furlough and postponed paying some bills.
Carstarphen said she was “super pleased” with the judge’s decision to allow the county to send tax bills.
Fulton County Schools Superintendent Jeff Rose said his district is still deciding if it will take out a similar loan to help cover its costs while it awaits tax revenue. He said the school board will review the possibility at a Thursday meeting.
Last year, Fulton County Schools did not take out a loan but it instituted a hiring and spending freeze.
“We’re trying to avoid that,” Rose said.