Archive for Wednesday, October 2, 2002

Location for new middle school remains secret

October 2, 2002

Some developers say growth depends on three things: location, location, location.

However, for voters, the exact location of the new middle school remains the lone item yet undisclosed by the Basehor-Linwood School Board in the upcoming $29.9 million bond issue.

Board members were scheduled to announce Monday, Sept. 30, where the proposed Basehor-Linwood Middle School would be located.

However, the announcement was delayed until the board's October meeting, school officials said.

"We want to tell the public immediately where the land is," said Kerri Muehler, Basehor-Linwood School Board president.

"But since the contract has not been finalized, we don't want to publicly say where it is," she added.

School officials said a verbal agreement has been reached between the school district and a Leavenworth County landowner. The announcement was delayed until a written agreement could be finalized.

School officials would only confirm that the new land was located in the central area of the school district.

"There were a lot of different variables in selecting where that land is," said Cal Cormack, Basehor-Linwood School District superintendent.

The land purchase would be contingent upon voter's approval of the bond issue.

The school district was also scheduled to release details on the financial impact an approved bond issue would have on taxpayers.

That was delayed until the new Leavenworth County property valuations are finalized later this month.

Although the land purchase and tax implications were not announced Monday night, board members did announce the election would take place Jan. 21.

Voters will decide whether to approve the construction of a new BLMS and renovations to Basehor, Linwood and Glenwood Ridge elementary schools.

Voter registration drives are taking place at each Basehor-Linwood school.

The School Board is also asking district patrons to help campaign for the upcoming election.

"The board cannot go out and campaign so it must be the patrons," Muehler said.

"We need to get as many people as we can on this committee," said John McArthur, school district financial advisor.

Cormack said the new construction is necessary for the school district to keep up with an increase in area growth.

"(There is) an impending crisis in our buildings if we don't act in a timely fashion," he said.

For the past 14 months, the school district has monitored area growth statistics.

That research has been checked and confirmed by an independent group, said Don Swartz, Basehor-Linwood School District director of operations.

"They said there's absolutely nothing wrong with the research that we've done," Swartz said.

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