Policy decisions are a matter of public record and are recorded in the minutes of Board meetings. The Superintendent of Schools, with the assistance of appropriate school personnel, is responsible for carrying out Board policies. All policies are codified in a "Manual of Policies and Regulations."
Each year the Board approves a budget designed to finance the county public school program. The budget is based upon the goals and policies of the Board, is developed by the Superintendent and other appropriate school personnel, and is considered and adopted by the Board. The three major divisions of the budget are current annual expenses, capital outlay, and debt incurred for previous school construction. Upon adoption by the Board, the budget is submitted to the County Executive for review, adjustment, and adoption. The recommendations of the County Executive are then submitted to the County Council, which may approve or reduce (but not increase) the budget. The county government is authorized by the county charter to appropriate tax revenues for the support of the school budget. Additional revenues are available through the funding of bonds and through state appropriations, and miscellaneous fees. However, the outstanding majority of budgeted school money is derived from county taxes.
The Board is empowered to purchase, rent or improve sites for schools and to construct, rent, or improve school facilities. As trustees of school property, the Board may receive and control property purchased or transferred to it for the benefit of the public schools. Architects may be employed to assist in the preparation of plans and specifications for remodeled or new school buildings. When necessary, the Board may institute court proceedings to acquire property needed for school purposes. Since the state has assumed a large portion of the fiscal responsibility for new school construction, the capital requests must be submitted to the State Interagency Committee and must be approved by the State Board of Public Works.