The Clarion-Ledger, 2/17/9

Most of the eight Mississippi school districts initially poised to run out of cash before the end of the school year may be able to make it after all.

But next fiscal year promises to be a tough one, too.

Hazlehurst, Covington, Indianola, Kemper County, Benton County, Jefferson Davis County, Noxubee County and Tate County all appeared to face immediate cash flow problems as a result of budget cuts. In January, Gov. Haley Barbour announced $158 million in cuts to the state’s current billion-dollar budget, including $85 million in cuts to elementary and secondary schools.

The districts are planning to squeak by after cutting expenses, freezing positions and postponing building maintenance projects. Mississippi expects to receive $250 million for public education from the federal stimulus package scheduled to be signed today by the president.