Residents:Be ready to give opinion at hearing

Thursday, January 31, 2008

When the community gathers for the 1028 preliminary determination hearing on Feb. 18, they can expect a similar format to the community input meetings previously held by the Clay Community Schools Board of Trustees.

Jeff Qualkinbush of Barnes and Thornburg law firm, Indianapolis, has been counseling the school board through the process of putting the proposed renovation plan together.

Qualkinbush said, because of the previous community meetings, an abbreviated presentation of the project will be presented at the hearing.

After the presentation, citizens will have the chance to voice their opinion. Those wishing to speak will be asked to sign in as they come into North Clay Middle School, but if others decide to speak during the session, they may address the board after those who signed in.

The board will consider the opinions heard, and after closing the public hearing, will vote on a resolution to move forward with the project and financing.

Qualkinbush is putting the resolution together, comprised of the recommendations from the building committees, a history of how the project developed, the maximum amount of money will be paid and the maximum length of time for the money to be repaid.

The resolution will also give permission for the board to repay the Capital Projects Fund for fees paid before the bond is issued.

If the board chooses to move forward with the project, the resolution will be published in the media within a week.

Once the notice is published, the public will have a 30-day period where a petition can be circulated to request a petition remonstrance. If enough signatures are collected, the board would publish a second notice, and a 60-day petition period would begin.

Both those for and against the project will be able to circulate petitions for the last 31 days of the 60-day period, and whichever petition has the most signatures from registered voters will win the remonstrance.

If there is a petition remonstrance, it could take until April before it carries out, and nothing could be done either way until June.

Qualkinbush said that is the reason why the board has been receptive to community input.

The petition remonstrance would push the project back, which would force the corporation to pay capitalized interest (between $800,000-$900,000) out of bond money instead of the tax levy when old bonds are finished in 2009.

Then portions of the project would need to be cut out to pay for the interest.

The resolution will not specify how much is to be spent on each building to safeguard against building cost flux and bid variations.

"What today they may think is a high priority and has a dollar amount associated with it may be a lower priority because of dollar amount association down the road," Qualkinbush said. "We'll let the project address that as the bids come back."

The board will also be updated on costs and designs as the project progresses.

Qualkinbush also said he will be working with the board and the community as the project progresses to answer questions and work through any legal issues.

The 1028 hearing will start at 6 p.m., at North Clay Middle School.

View 5 comments
Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. Please note that those who post comments on this website may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.
  • If this renovation will make it "safe" for my daughter at North Clay to go to the bathroom, then I am all for it

    -- Posted by madmom61 on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 11:13 AM
  • Sorry madmom61, from what I've read the original proposal would have addressed that issue with security cameras to view halls outside bathroom doors, and possibly hire a part time security guard. But with the "compromise" that the vocal minority pushed thru will not allow much of anything security wise to be done at either the high school or middle school.....I believe one of the comments was, "lock the doors and install a doorbell". Sad times for our kids, and the future of Clay County. The vocal minority's only concern is that their property taxes will go down....Remember who supports the vocal minority at election time.

    -- Posted by studentsfirst on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 11:35 AM
  • Maybe I am on the wrong path but are most of the security issues with the middle school and the high school at this point? So they get no security? I do not understand

    -- Posted by madmom61 on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 3:19 PM
  • There will be some security updates performed on all schools, but will be enough to get it to state code. The reason there is nothing else is because of people like Leo Southworth and his letters to the editor, the Farm Bearu wanting their taxes to go down because they are mad that the state raised their taxes this year so they want some level on it. But the main reason that nothing got done was because of the LACK of support from the community. NO ONE wanted to come to the meetings to support it. Everyone just assumed that it would be taken care of. But there was more people at the meetings against it then for it. So the community has no one to blame but themselves. It was the lack of participation on the communities part. So if you are looking for someone to blame, do not blame the school board, blame your neighbors, and yourself.

    -- Posted by supporter on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 5:13 PM
  • I do not think I will blame myself as I have been at the meeting and made my views known

    -- Posted by madmom61 on Fri, Feb 22, 2008, at 10:47 AM
Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: