The last article in the paper (November 2017) said, that as a District we have resumed talks about a bond project. The reality is that the dialogue for a bond project started in 1996 and has never stopped. It is true that the Board is talking about setting a date on the calendar to put a bond project back to the voters. The discussion at this time is to explore options for moving forward. The needs of this district are very real and still with us. We are taking the time to explore other options for the project. We have looked into other funding mechanisms including grants and have determined that those other funding mechanisms will not provide the funding needed for a growth project. We are looking for ways to cut some of the costs. The article in the paper indicated that we are trying to find a way to drop the costs down to $14 mil. Keep in mind, that that figure was only a target and a loose target at that. In order to reduce the project costs down to $14 mil, we have to reduce the square footage of the project. The $4 mil shift in building new then turns to the existing building built in 1949, 1962 and 1974 to make renovations and upgrades. It is uncertain that we will be able to make the target of $14 mil as the costs for renovating a space can cost more than building new. We also have to weigh the expense very carefully, as we would be pouring millions into renovating some very old spaces in the building. These old spaces have issues associated with them. By the time we explore the costs with updates such as lighting efficiencies, electrical, acoustics, air quality, code issues, safety standards etc. you begin to discover it is cheaper to build new. Also keep in mind that the option to reduce square footage does not then address all of our needs as a district. It does however address some of our very critical needs and does help to move this district forward. It is our hope that by January, 2018 we will have several options for the Board to discuss, with some real numbers of costs, needs etc. Stay tuned as I will continue to blog about the thoughts and progress of bond project.
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