School Bond Election - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

05-05-08 - Garrison

School Bond Election

by Donna McCollum

The Garrison Independent School District superintendent matter of factly reviews the proposal being presented to taxpayers.  " The proposed bond election is for $5 million over 30 years. The facilities that are included in the bond election will be a new band hall, a girl's athletic facility, along with a new gymnasium, " said Arnie Kelley. If passed taxes would go up about twelve cents per $100 valuation.

But the Garrison Bulldog school board may have bit off more than it can chew. Organized opponents say it began with the bond's presentation, or in their opinion, lack of presentation to the community. Lane Barton heads up the concerned taxpayers for a better gisd.  " Very little of the community, GISD taxpayers, were aware that there was even a bond election being thought about or talked about by the board and the administration, " said Barton.  

Kelley says nothing was done behind closed doors. Right now he's just wanting people to recognize the district's needs. He overlooks a girl's dressing room that hasn't changed in over three decades.  " We've grown in number and are outdated. It's very difficult to clean and maintain, " stated Kelley. And the band is facing some of the same growing pains, director Cliffton Walker looks over several rows of chairs, setting inches from one another.    " What you see right now is set up for around 40 kids and our biggest class this next year will have somewhere around 52 kids in it, "  said Walker.

Opponents don't totally disagree with the need, but say a new gym requiring a 30 year loan isn't a wise business decision during a troubled economy.   Barton said,  " We have a proposed third gymnasium for a 2a school with 670 students enrolled and we're beginning to see that there were maybe some over kill to the building projects also. "

The board proposes that it's time to improve areas that haven't changed significantly in 38 years. The election is May 10th.

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