SPLOST Examination Two Years Before Vote

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For eight years now, customers in Lowndes County have been paying a Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, or SPLOST, with the funds heading to local schools.

Educators say the money has paid for major renovations and educational improvements. Now, leaders are turning their attention to the next SPLOST vote in 2007.

Steve Smith, Lowndes Superintendent, says, "We've got to make some decisions in the next three or four months that will impact the Lowndes County school system for the next 10 plus years, so we would like parent participation in those decisions. It’s not just a one way street."

School system leaders say getting more community and parental involvement is key in this process because of the extent of the projects at hand, and that's why they're looking for more folks to come out to their next planning meeting.

Mike Davis, School Board Chairman, says, "We'd just like to invite everybody to come out and just see what's going on and see that the future brings, and of course, bring your questions with you because we need to know what's on your mind."

That way the school system can have the best plan available when trying to get voters to approve another SPLOST, which could bring in more than $50 million to the Lowndes school system alone.

The next school system meeting about future SPLOST spending and projects takes place next Thursday night, and educators really want a lot of public input.