Archive for Monday, September 10, 2012

Board approves report on bond issue

September 10, 2012


The Lawrence school board on Monday approved a plan for pre-election planning relating to its proposed bond issue.

Related document

Bond issue scope presentation ( .PDF )

Related document

School borders presentation ( .PDF )

The board approved a scope of services report from local firm Gould Evans for $120,180 in services charged before the April election. The plan breaks down which stakeholders to talk to, as well as physical site assessments for consideration on what exactly should be included in the bond.

In other actions on Monday, the board:

• Took public comment and further discussion on a proposal to change school boundaries. It would affect the Deerfield School neighborhoods north of Peterson Road and east of Kasold Drive, including the area east of Iowa Street and north of Interstate 70 extending to the Kansas River.

Instead of feeding into Liberty Memorial Central Middle School with several students applying for transfers to West Middle School, the boundary change would mean these students all go to West.

There’s strong support for the proposal, which first came about in February, but some disagreement. This change would go into effect next year, so some students already at Liberty Memorial Central would have to choose to transfer to West or remain but not have bus service.

The board will vote on the proposal at its next meeting, scheduled for 7 p.m. Sept. 24 at the district office, 110 McDonald Drive.

• Talked over a draft of district goals for the year. The goals, like last year’s, cover overall themes of “excellence, equity and engagement.” Superintendent Rick Doll said he would take the board’s further suggestions to further refine the stated goals. The document can be found at


Robert Schehrer 5 years, 6 months ago

A bond election would not be needed if they would not have spent $18 million on two new football fields. This money could have been used to upgrade the school buildings.

Richard Heckler 5 years, 6 months ago

Most of this was presented to the School Board on 9/10/2012

What about a Plan B?

The city and county agreed to reduce their mill levies when a bond issue was going before voters to build Free State High school according to a April 2,2001 LJW article. Mike Wildgen was city manager at that time.

Plan B

If a bond issue is submitted and fails what then? USD 497 simply cannot ignore the situation any longer. This rehab work probably should have commenced 15 years ago. An existing Plan B set to go would display fiscal and political savvy in the eyes of taxpayers. What a novel idea and one that would be respected.

How should the school district pay for a $16.5 million maintenance backlog in elementary schools?
61% = over a period of time 31% do a bond issue

How? We must consider existing tax dollars going to the capitol outlay funds over a period of 3-5 years.

At $7.5 million USD 497 tax dollars a year in capital outlay funds this maintenance could be accomplished in 3-5 years without raising taxes or borrowing money. USD 497 2011 Facilities and Maintenance Capital Outlay Priorities suggests(?) $6,440,000 could be spent perhaps annually towards the rehab projects.

Any further spending on the PLAY sports project may need to be curtailed in order to support the rehab project. Taxpayer owned properties aka elementary school buildings cannot be neglected further.

School Priorities

One might consider including Plan B on the ballot in order to secure or lock in the Plan B. Thus preventing a different USD 497 BOD from cutting off the project.

Next = Biting the Bullet • Put the USD 497 admin building on the market. Buying this building was not popular among taxpayers. What’s up with East Heights? • Selling off the new 76 acres which was purchased as an investment so to speak according to Scott Morgan.

Most of this was presented to the School Board on 9/10/2012

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