Town Council Debates Cary Mayor's School Money Plan
Posted March 8, 2000 6:00 a.m. EST
CARY — The mayor ofCarywants to set aside $3.8 million to improve area schools, but the catch is the money willonly benefit children who live in Cary. The town council debated the mayor's plan Thursday night.
Cary Mayor Glen Lang says schools are the council's No. 1 issue right now, and it is time to take the matter into their own hands.
"The county and state are supposed to be responsible for our schools," Lang says. "Thirty-three percent of our kids are in trailers. That does not sound like they are taking that responsibility too seriously."
Lang wants to look at giving Cary schools $3.8 million through a nonprofit corporation. ForEast Cary Middle School, that would amount to $180,000.
"When you look at technology, the number of computers we have and putting kids in front of computers, that's quite a few computers that you can get," says Matt Wight, principal at East Cary Middle School.
Councilwoman Marla Dorrel opposes the mayor's plan.
"If we have this much money to spare, why not just cut the taxes and return the money to the taxpayers," Dorrel says. "If we do that, those who choose to can donate to a nonprofit."
Lang says he has no problem with criticism of his plan.
"I have no problem with the criticism, but you need to make a better proposal that results in something that the people of Cary know that their children are going to have a better education at the end of the year," Lang says.
The council voted 4-2 to study the plan again in the upcoming budget talks and look at setting the money aside.