PRC School Board of Trustees alleviates concerns of demolition

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Monday’s Pearl River County School Board meeting began with a wellness presentation by Curriculum Director Kim Alford. She said that the Pearl River County School District successfully conducted two health events, a fall walking event and a spring family health fair. Both went over well. District-wide, staff completed 100 percent of their suicide prevention training. Also, security features were purchased for several of the schools, a parent/community safety committee will soon be formed and stricter regulations will be enforced for staff to wear nametags.

After Alford spoke, Warren Bowen, a consultant with Triage Facility Consultants, came before the Board to discuss the demolition of the old upper elementary administration building. He said that recently an anonymous call was made accusing the school of unlawfully planning on tearing down the adjacent 2-story elementary school building. This caused several issues since the 2-story building is considered a Mississippi landmark.

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“During the process of building up to the bond election I think we must’ve really peeved somebody off,” Bowen said.

Bowen said the building to be demolished is a one-story building previously used for administrative offices. Bowen said he met with Jim Woodrick, Director of Historical Preservations, and provided necessary paperwork to prove that the protected building was not going to be town down.

Bowen said when the time comes for the demolition, the Board can decide whether to keep any pieces of the building – such as bricks – for their historical relevance.

After the consent agenda was approved, V. Warren Greenlee, Young Law Group attorney, said that four bids came in on the district’s bonds and have been sold at a 3.6 percent interest rate. He said this rate is extremely good and will not only allow the District to save on interest over the life of the loan, but millage will not increase as much as anticipated. Greenlee said compared with other schools in the state that sold bonds in the past year, PRC did surprisingly well. Plus, Greenlee added that the bonds could either be sold at a premium or a discount, and they sold at a premium for over $200,000.

As soon as Greenlee announced that $200,000 in additional funds would be available, various district employees began discussing what the money could be used for.

“Congratulations. This speaks well for the District and the condition of your finances,” Greenlee said.

The anticipated closing date is August 15, Greenlee said.

Finally, a motion was passed which will move the School Board meetings to the 2nd Thursday of each month. The agendas will be available on the 1st of the month. The meetings will continue to be held at 5:30 p.m. in the Boardroom.