BY SARAH GREGORY
The purchase of a wind turbine for the new "green technology" program at the Greene Technology Center was unanimously approved Thursday by the Joint Board of Education, which is composed of the Greeneville City and Greene County boards of education.
Technology Center Principal Jerry Ayers said the $19,081 piece of equipment will be fully paid for using grant funding secured earlier in the school year.
The turbine will stand 45 feet tall and will be able to start generating electricity with as little as 6 miles-per-hour winds.
The bid approved is from a Greene County company, Greene Tech Renewable Energy.
The first step in installing the turbine will be to pour the concrete pad upon which it will be installed. That pad will take approximately 30 days to cure.
After that, Greene Tech Renewable Energy will coordinate with the Tennessee Valley Authority and the Greeneville Light & Power System to connect the turbine to the electrical grid and prepare to generate electricity.
As is customary, Principal Jerry Ayers gave a report updating the board on activities at the Technology Center.
Ayers discussed the coordination with Tennessee Technical Center of Morristown that will allow the Technology Center to become a satellite of that program.
Four new programs of study will be introduced as part of that effort: Welding, Machine Tool, Industrial Electricity, and Industrial Maintenance.
Students who complete three trimesters will receive Industrial Maintenance Certificates.
The carpentry program will no longer be offered.
Ayers noted that capital outlay projects have been scheduled for the spring and summer months.
In spring, the commons room will receive new carpeting, ceiling, and paint.
In spring and summer, the carpentry area will be renovated to support the new Industrial Maintenance program.
Renovations to a student restroom and the canopy at the Technology Center's entrance will also be made during the summer.
BUDGET AMENDMENT OK'D
Without discussion, board members unanimously approved a budget amendment that adds $40,784 in property tax revenue to the Technology Center's 2012-2013 school year budget.
The action brings the Technology Center's budget to a total of $1,739,069.
The newly added revenue will be used in four areas:
* $19,965 will be applied to the Vocational Education Program, which covers instructional supplies, materials, and textbooks;
* $819 will be applied to the Board of Education category to be used to pay the Trustee Commission caused by the increase in property tax revenue;
* $5,000 will be added to the Technology Center's Office of Principal category to fund such supplies as brochures and marketing materials;
* $15,000 will be added to the Building Improvements budget category for capital outlay needs.
The board heard reports from Nicole Buchanan, Chief Financial Officer of the Greeneville City School System, concerning the Greene Technology Center's December financial statement and audit report of the 2011-2012 school year.
December revenues for the Technology Center totaled $194,112, bringing year-to-date revenue totals to $760,173, approximately 44.8 percent of the overall budget for the fiscal year which ends June 30, 2013.
December expenditures totaled $147,155. Year-to-date expenditures total $852,493, approximately 50.2 percent of the overall budget.
Buchanan also presented the report from audits of the 2011-2012 school year performed by Rodefer, Moss & Co., PLLC.
Audits were performed on the Technology Center's vocational fund and school activity fund. Both audits were returned with "unqualified" opinions, the most favorable rating possible.
The board approved both reports unanimously without discussion.