Wednesday, October 5, 2022
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White Co BOE Postpones Selling Central View School

After eight months of discussion, the White County School Board decided to postpone selling the Central View School building.

Members voted 4-2 Thursday on a twice amended motion to not sell the property until October 31st 2024.

The motion includes a contingency that if facility upkeep exceeds $100,000 per year that the school board could revisit dealing the property. The school board will also be required to review the feasibility of reopening the school each April as a part of budget discussions.

The approval came after four residents spoke in favor of reopening the school and about an hour of discussion among board members. School Board Member Jayson McDonald said it was time to make a decision.

“Every meeting that we have had, we have talked about the consideration of Central View School,” McDonald said. “We’ve heard the same presentation every month. I would like to see us be able to focus on the other schools in our district, and then in budget time, come back and look at the need for Central View School.”

School Board Member Dewayne Howard made the original motion to prolong selling the school. Howard said new board members would be elected by that time with a different viewpoint.

“As elected officials, our first response is to do what the community wants,” Howard said. “Then, try to work it out in the school system. Our first response isn’t to work for the school. Our first response is to work for the citizens. They’ve acted responsibly. They’ve gone out and got 800 signatures. Not only in Central View community, but every single district that is represented here. (…) That’s an incredible number. That should be automatic. That should tell every person sitting right here on this board that we are not closing Central View School. We’re not selling Central View School. The people in this community have spoken. If you so choose to sell it, you’re doing it for personal interest.”

School Board Chair Bob Young later motioned to add the maintenance cap. Young said the school board does not know what the future holds and questioned how the board should handle future costs during the no sale time frame.

“We don’t want the asset to deteriorate,” Young said. “We’ve got to figure out what’s due, because the facility is going to require maintenance ongoing, so we probably need to look at costs for that and identify those costs. We will have to budget for that.”

School Board Member Adam Hickey voted against the twice amended motion. He said setting a restriction like this on a facility was unwise.

School Board Member Kenneth Robinson was the other no vote.

“It’s enough already,” Robinson said. “I’ve said about all I want to say. I’ve heard about all I want to hear. So it’s time to do something.”

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