School to seek sinking fund millage for repairs
The Cedar Springs Board of Education voted Monday evening, December 12, to hold a special election on February 28, 2012, to seek a one-mill “sinking fund” to help finance repairs, renovations, and remodeling.
The school has been forced to cut millions of dollars in expenses the last few years, due to cutbacks in funding from the state of Michigan, which means some repairs have been put on hold.
One mill is equal to $1 for every $1,000 of taxable value of property. If the taxable value is $50,000, the cost would be $50 for the property owner. The millage would last 10 years and then cease.
“We’ve tried to maintain the buildings and roads the best we can, but there are things that need to be done,” said Asst. Superintendent David Cairy.
Road repair is one of the items that a parent group came up with. “We have a lot of miles of road on the campus,” noted Cairy. Other items include replacing boilers in the old buildings, improving parking at Cedar Trails, improving safety and security at building entrances, eventually replacing the turf on the football field, and other items.
Cairy emphasized this millage would not be for new construction, just repairs. “We are at a point (financially) where we really need it,” he said.
The school had put this proposal on the ballot last year but it was defeated. They decided to try again because they need the money, and because they said many parents had contacted them and said they didn’t know about it last year when the election was held.
Board votes no on OK conference realignment
The Cedar Springs Board of Education unanimously voted NO Monday evening on the realignment proposal from the OK Conference. Under the plan being proposed, Cedar Springs would be part of a new division—the OK Bronze—made up of six teams—Cedar, Forest Hills Northern, West Catholic, Greenville, Northview, and Forest Hills Eastern. They would play non-conference games in weeks one and two, crossover games with the Green and Gold in weeks three and four, and conference games in weeks five through nine.
“We are in a 8-team conference that has worked well for us,” said Suprintendent Ron McDermed. “Some teams are quite aways away.”
Principal Ron Behrenwald agreed. “It’s more transportation costs, more time on the buses. From a student standpoint, it’s not the best option,” he said.
School districts across the area are also voting on the proposal. Athletic Supervisor Autumn Mattson said that there is some talk that the proposal may not pass by the 2/3 vote needed, and that they would know for sure on Monday after the last two districts vote. She said it’s unknown whether they would leave things the way they are if it’s defeated, or go back to the drawing board. “It’s never happened before,” she said.