The Clay Community School Corporation School Board has maintained the position that the renovation project proposal has not been decided on, and a group of concerned citizens have submitted their own solution.
After meeting at the open community meetings, Walt Moore, Joe Thomas, Bert Geswein and Ron Sherb realized they shared the same concern with the proposal; it is too much money and commits the corporation to the debt for too long of a time.
Moore and the other men created a proposal that solved these issues, with help from Greg Lovett at Fifth/Third Bank.
The proposal is for the corporation to bond $15 million over five years to begin renovations, at 3.65 percent interest rate.
This is in comparison to the current proposal of $53 million over 23 years with an interest rate of 4.6 to 5.5 percent.
Moore said the citizens' proposal would decrease the amount of interest paid over five years from $11-13 million to $1.4 million.
Moore also said the proposal would allow future school boards the flexibility to reevaluate the project and make decisions when the current project was finished.
"The interest is money we'll never see again," said Moore, adding that getting the most return for the limited tax dollars available is part of the goal.
The citizens have met with members of the school board, Superintendent Dan Schroeder and Business Manager Mike Fowler.
"I think we have to look at all options at this point," Schroeder said.
The school board will have time to look over and discuss the submitted plan, and decide if it is something to consider.
The board will have the final decision on the project, but the group of citizens as well as other members of the community has threatened petition remonstration if the current proposal goes through.
If enough members of the community sign the petition against the project, it would stall the project for a year.
There would be no discussion of terms, and as Moore put it, "If we win, the schools lose."
Moore has also proposed, if the school board does not feel the new proposal is appropriate, a committee to be appointed by the board made up of local businessmen and farmers who hold no immediate connection to the corporation and have experience with large sums of money.
Moore feels the 28-person committee that helped put the current proposal together was biased, because it was made up of relatives of CCSC employees.
Schroeder said that he appreciates the input from the group, especially the proposal that was presented.
"We want everything to be out in the open," Schroeder said.
The new proposal will be presented to the Farm Bureau board on Nov. 5, and the board will decide whether the bureau will back the proposal or not.
Bureau President Marshall Nuckolls said the school board will be invited, and it will be a public meeting.
"I like to work with board action," Marshall said, noting that he did not want to make any opinions before hearing the presentation.
At the annual meeting, the bureau conducted a survey of members about the current proposal.
Results indicated that the members firmly did not support the proposed renovation plan.
The Farm Bureau published the results in an ad in The Brazil Times.
Schroeder said the board would not discuss the proposal at the next meeting, happening on Oct. 30, at 6 p.m., at North Clay Middle School.