P. O. BOX 2120
July 17, 1998


TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Paul D. Stapleton
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: School Construction Grants for 1998-99

  The 1998 General Assembly passed legislation (Senate Bill
  4005) which included a formula for distributing school
  construction funds under the Virginia Public School
  Construction Grants Program.  The formula recommended by 
  Governor Gilmore and adopted by the General Assembly
  distributes $55 million in each year of the 1998-2000

  The methodology first distributes $200,000 to each school
  division in each fiscal year as a floor.  The balance of
  each year's appropriation is then distributed on the basis
  of the composite index and Average Daily Membership (ADM) of
  each school division.  For the purposes of this
  distribution, prior year ADM will be used.

  There is a local match required to receive these funds.  The
  amount of the match is based on the composite index and is
  calculated by multiplying each locality's index by its grant

  School divisions may use these funds for school
  construction, additions, infrastructure, site acquisition
  for public school buildings and facilities, and renovations,
  including the costs of retrofitting or enlarging public
  school buildings.  A school division, which has completed
  any such project during the previous ten years, may use the
  grant for debt service payments or a portion thereof.  The
  required match also must be used for these purposes.

  The amount of each grant awarded to a qualifying school
  division in any fiscal year shall not exceed 100 percent of
  the school division's aggregate annual expenditures.  This
  means that if a school division does not have annual
  expenditures equal to the grant amount plus the required
  match, the grant amount must be reduced to meet the intent
  of the language.  The Department of Education will collect
  information to determine if this requirement was met at the
  close of each fiscal year.

  The Board of Education at its June 25, 1998, meeting
  approved guidelines for the administration of the program. 
  These guidelines include the procedures for the distribution
  of the grants in accordance with the legislation. 
  Attachment A provides a copy of these procedures. 
  Attachment B is a printout showing the amount of the grant
  award for each school division, based on prior year ADM, and
  the required local match.  Attachment C provides the form
  and information that school divisions must provide in order
  to receive the funding.  This attachment should be returned
  by September 30, 1998, to Mrs. June Eanes, Budget Director.

  If there are any questions concerning this program, please
  call Daniel S. Timberlake, Assistant Superintendent for
  Finance, at (804) 225-2025, or June F. Eanes, Budget
  Director, at (804) 225-2060.


  Attachments: A hard copy of this memo and its attachments
               will be sent to the superintendent's office.