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Pine Tree district talks bond projects

By Melissa Greene mgreene@news-journal.com
July 8, 2013 at 11 p.m.


Pine Tree ISD board members continued building toward the future while hearing reports on the district's foundation at Monday's board meeting.

The board discussed the potential construction and location of a 4,000 square foot, 6-bay storage building at the new athletic complex - an alternate project approved by the board in June, provided funds from the $29.9 million bond were still available.

"At this time the bond money we have could not cover this cost," said Terre Dunn, board member and past president.

However, Superintendent Dr. T.J. Farler said she will meet with the construction firm this week to get an estimate of cost savings - adjustments to the budget during construction as a result of price negotiations.

"I suspect we'll come in somewhere about about $1 million under budget," Farler said.

The board will be given the exact amount by Thursday, she said, and a special meeting will be called to determine if the structure, planned to house track hurdles, band equipment, maintenance equipment and such, will be built and in what form.

"We are pretty sure we gained some momentum in the process, because the GM (general manager) does some negotiating in the buying process," Farler said.

Tony Hollins, Pine Tree director of facility services, said a building of that size would cost $150,000 to $250,000 when including all associated expenses, such as electrical work.

Assistant Superintendent James Skeeler said the new turf is now in place, the press box is getting some final touches and construction on the new field house is continuing.

However, special color-coded seats that will spell out the letters "PT" on the home side stands are on order but have been delayed, he said, and temporary seating will be in place for the first few games of the season.

Projects at the high school are wrapping up as well, with only new security doors to be placed and theater equipment to be installed, he said.

The board also heard reports from principals at each campus during an annual review of the school year.

Michelle Mitchell, Pine Tree Director of Child Nutrition, said 471,393 meals were served in the district, at a cost of just more than $1.3 million. Due to a price increase in 2011, the price of school lunches will not increase for 2013-14.

Scott Mann, director of transportation, said school buses traveled 354,893 miles during normal school routes, with an additional 104,822 driven during extracurricular activities. No bus-related accidents were reported during the year.

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