Guilford County Schools graphic

GREENSBORO — School leaders want to look at using some lottery money for current building needs instead of putting it all toward paying down debt on previous projects.

The Guilford County Board of Education voted unanimously Tuesday to revisit the longstanding practice of using lottery money to pay down debt on past school construction.

The county is expected to get about $4.75 million from the N.C. Education Lottery this school year for school construction.

Rather than passing an annual measure to OK using that money on debt, as they have for many years, board members authorized the superintendent and chairwoman and the board’s attorney to discuss how to use that money with county leadership.

They did not specify what shape a new agreement might take, but stressed the need to revisit the issue.

The state allows counties to use the lottery money to help pay down debt on past school construction if both the school district and county leaders approve of that use, according to the school board’s attorney.

Vice chairwoman T. Dianne Bellamy-Small said significant progress had been made on paying down past debt, and it might make sense to use a portion of this year’s money on current needs.

Also Tuesday, board members agreed to ask county commissioners to transfer $10 million to a fund for school safety and security improvements. This would be a formal request for money the commissioners have already budgeted.

The district is looking to spend about $4 million on more secure school doors. That includes putting more exterior doors under electronic control for locking, as well as addressing inside and outside door-maintenance needs.

Under the spending plan outlined in the agenda, another $2.5 million would go for communication systems, $2 million for surveillance systems, $685,000 for fire alarm systems and $615,000 for student photo-badge printing stations. About $200,000 would go toward contingency to cover if anything costs more than expected.

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Contact Jessie Pounds at

336-373-7002 and follow

@JessiePounds on Twitter.

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