Weatherford School superintendent says district short on money

Saturday, May 25th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

WEATHERFORD, Okla. (AP) _ The school superintendent, already accused of mismanaging money, has told teachers they might not get paychecks because the district is in such financial trouble.

Grant Frankenberg said the school district might run out of money by June 30 and would not be able to pay teachers' salaries in July and August.

The superintendent asked teachers to file a ``friendly'' lawsuit against the district so they would be paid.

If there were a judgment in such a lawsuit, the money could be billed to taxpayers and automatically added to property taxes over the next three years.

``I do ballpark figures every day, and it's hard to determine where we will end up,'' Frankenberg said. ``We don't even know if this is a process we'll have to do yet. But if it is, we'll be prepared.''

Custer County Assessor Debbie Collins said the process is legal, but rare.

Frankenberg said the district is projected to finish with $9.4 million in gross revenue this year, $1 million less than last year. The district has been hit by state aid cuts, losing more than $200,000 since Jan. 1.

Also, the state Education Department ordered Weatherford to repay about $117,000 in misused federal Title I money.