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Eagle Ford: Poth school district considers bond issue
POTH -- Organized to inform the public of the details of the proposed bond, the Poth Independent School District (ISD) Community Advisory Committee held its first meeting Jan. 30.
Superintendent Scott Caloss opened the proceedings with a PowerPoint presentation regarding possible reasons for a bond issue. Caloss, as a representative of the district, cannot endorse a bond issue; however, he can provide the information for district voters to make an informed decision.
His presentation listed areas where improvement or updates are needed and laid out specific reasons for a bond. At the top of the list was the lack of materials to meet the needs of modern students. This could be corrected through more interactive technology in the labs and classrooms, to address the growing need for technological literacy in today’s job market.
The presentation also covered the district’s capacity concerns. According to Caloss, the high school could see an increase of 60 students by 2016. One of the chief reasons for additional facilities is to add more than 8,300 square feet of classrooms to the campus, not including restrooms and prep rooms, to meet the needs of the student population. This would be accomplished through a layout of a total of four labs and three classrooms.
Caloss broke down each component of the cost estimates for the complex. Costs for three science labs, one “smart lab,” a life skills classroom, and two regular classrooms are estimated at between $2.3 million and $3.3 million.
With “soft costs” -- composed of anything not part of the structure itself -- estimated to be 20 percent of the total with a contingency of 10 percent for fluctuation in material costs, the entire project is estimated at between $3 million and $4.3 million.
Such a bond over a period of 20 years would add $102.31 annually in property taxes to a home valued at $100,000, the board members heard.
Growth in assessed value within the district also was analyzed. Particularly due to the current oil and gas exploration boom, potential growth was estimated at a rate of 125 percent in total property valuation.
According to Caloss, a town hall discussion will be held Feb. 6. The district may hold a bond election May 11.
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