State offers Carlisle Schools funds for new buildings

District reviewing options before deciding if it will place bond issue on May ballot.

Carlisle Local Schools could receive from the state as much as 52 percent of the cost to build a new K-12 building if voters pass a bond issue to pay the remaining amount.

Carlisle school board members met in a special meeting Oct. 21 to review financial information recently received from the Ohio School Facilities Commission.

According to that report, if the board places a bond issue on the ballot and if it passes, the state would pick up about 52 percent of the eligible costs for a new K-12 building that would cost in the range of $52 million to $54 million.

“We updated (the board) on the process,” Superintendent Larry Hook said. “They are looking at it very hard.”

Hook the district tried unsuccessfully to pass a bond issue for a new facility about five years ago.

Hook said new facilities are needed in the district of about 1,700 students, even though its enrollment projections are lower than they were five years ago.

“The need is certainly here,” he said, citing various plumbing, HVAC, and technology issues as well as roofs being out of warranty and older boiler systems in need of repairs. “We continue to spend money on these buildings to keep them going.”

The district’s oldest building is Chamberlain Middle School, which was built in 1930. Alden Brown Elementary was built in 1956; Bobby Grigsby Intermediate was built in 1963; and Carlisle High School was built in 1972.

If the board chooses to move forward, it would have to approve two resolutions, at two separate meetings, sometime in January in order to place a bond issue on the May 2017 ballot.

Hook said there would be community meetings and forums to discuss the project and to get community feedback.

“I think it has a good chance of passing and if people don’t want it, they’ll vote against it,” Hook said.

The district should have more information about a possible bond issue at the end of November, he said.

Board President Tammy Lainhart could not be reached for comment.

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