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Last updated 2:20AM ET
March 5, 2021
Birmingham School Board Must Sell Properties
(APR - Alabama Public Radio ) - High maintenance costs are forcing the Birmingham Board of Education to sell 14 properties next year.

Most are abandoned schools that were closed years ago, but some of the buildings have been used recently for central office employees. School officials say it costs the system between $300,000 and $500,000 annually maintain each building.

Superintendent Stan Mims said they're not sure how much money will be raised by the sales and officials are waiting on appraisals.

The Birmingham school system has been struggling financially for years, in part because of declining enrollment and revenues.

A new state law requires school systems have at least one month's operating expenses in a reserve account. For Birmingham schools, that means about $19.5 million, but the system has $2.8 million and needs $16.7 million more.

The board fired nearly 400 employees in the spring and closed two schools, but it will close an additional 18 schools over the next three years to save money.

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