HULBERT – Hulbert School Board members voted 4-1 Monday night to approve a procedure to allow school administrators to adjust encumbrance amounts for several general fund and building fund purchase orders.

Superintendent Todd Kimrey said the policy was recommended by school auditors Sanders, Bledsoe and Hewitt. Kent Barnes cast the lone dissenting vote.

“Some of these are being changed 25 percent for the general fund and the building fund {purchase orders] are changed by 50 percent. I have a problem with that,” Barnes said.

Barnes said he didn’t think a bid for an air conditioner should have more than doubled.

“I’m a bit surprised with that myself,” Kimrey said. “You start working on the air conditioning in an older building, and you may run into some other problems.”

Kimrey said sometimes changes are required. He said gas prices have skyrocketed, and there was no way to budget for that at the start of the year. He said any number of factors could occur that would require amounts to be changed.

“We made a change in December last year [December 2004],” Barnes said. “There were no changes in January to June [2005].”

“I guess we just hit it,” Kimrey said.

Barnes questioned using San-ders, Bledsoe and Hewitt when the board hasn’t chosen them as auditors for the 2005-’06 school year.

“We’ve used them for 10 years,” Kimrey said. “They were using them before I got here. I’m going to keep calling them and asking their opinion.”

Barnes said there was no need to wait and call a different accountant for an opinion. Kimrey explained the situation was similar to the school district’s using the same attorneys for legal representation and advice.

Earlier in the meeting, at Barnes’ request, the board pulled two purchase orders from a list scheduled to be considered during the first stages of the agenda, where routine items such as meeting minutes and the treasurer’s report are acted on. Barnes took issue with the purchase orders because amounts and vendors had been changed.

“I don’t begrudge the people their travel,” he said.

“The auditors are OK with it,” Kimrey told Barnes.

The remaining purchase orders were approved unanimously.

Barnes was also the dissenting vote in approving a child nutrition and physical fitness program and a physical education plan. The plans are required by the state, Kimrey said.

Kimrey said policies are prepared by the Oklahoma State School Board Association. Barnes said he understood the policies to require a local committee to study and develop a local policy. Kimrey said the panel is to be appointed after the policy’s in place.

Board members unanimously approved the resignation of Pat Martinez, who oversees the Johnson-O’Malley program. Kimrey said Martinez has a new grandchild and wants to spend more time with her family.

After a lengthy executive session to consider Kimrey’s evaluation, the board returned to open session and approved the evaluation discussed in the executive session. No details were given. Kimrey said he has two years left on his current contract with HPS, and the evaluation is an annual requirement.



What’s next

The next regular meeting of the Hulbert School Board will be Tuesday, Feb. 14, at 6:30 p.m. in the school auditorium.

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