Committee member Jeff Morelock said the Commission should look at funding the projects at Lake Forest, Walker Valley and funding for a new Blue Springs School at the same time.
The school board has not asked the Commission for funds to construct a new school. The priorities for the system have not changed. Blue Springs is number three on the board’s capital projects plan after Lake Forest and Walker Valley.
Committee member Brian Smith asked Bradley County Board of Education chairman Troy Weathers if the school had any money set aside for capital projects that it could use toward the projects.
Weathers said the school had used its capital projects funding to construct the fine arts center at Bradley Central High School without asking for additional funding.
None of these projects can be completed without a tax increase.
All three projects would require borrowing $24 million, with an additional $12 million required to be given to Cleveland City Schools. Any time the county borrows money for capital projects for the school system the city schools get a third of what is borrowed.
Morelock said borrowing all the money at one time would make only one tax increase necessary.
No motion was made to pursue this, and no recommendation will be made to the Commission at this time.
The committee also discussed community member Carlon Davis’ concerns about Blue Springs School.
Davis had brought his concerns to the Commission during Monday’s work session. Davis said he did not like the school being moved so close to the city limits as the current land being looked at would put it.
He said the land that the Blue Springs ballpark sits on was originally donated to the county for a school. In his opinion, a school should be built on the land or it should be given back to the donating family.
During Thursday’s committee meeting, Weathers said the school system was not going to take the ballpark from the community.
Weathers said buying property will be cheaper than trying to expand the school at the current site.
“We are in negotiations as of today talking with the gentleman on property a mile and a half ... off the exit of Blue Springs Road,” Weathers said. “Perfect, great property.”
Blue Springs Elementary School was not large enough to bring in enough funding for all the employees without the use of portable classrooms.
Changing the school’s location will also let the school tap into a sewer line rather than having a sewer station such as that at the current location.