Planners fine tune capital improvements list

LANCASTER—The Lancaster planning commission on March 16 moved a step closer to making new school facilities a reality.

District 3 planner Tara Booth moved to amend the $10.5 million request presented by the schools to be $9.3 million for funds to begin site work, facility design and construction on new schools. The motion passed unanimously, 6-0, with support from Steve Sorensen, David Chupp Jr., Ty Brent, Bob Smart, Glendon Penn Jr. and Booth. Planner Tom Richardson was absent.

The proposed capital improvement plan under consideration by the commission initially included the school board’s request of $10.5 million for fiscal year 2018-19 for new schools. Another $59.5 million is requested in fiscal year 2019-20 to complete construction for school opening in September 2021.

“Using the only number we have right now, $70 million, we allocated 15% of that ($10.5 million) to the first year and the remainder to ensuing years,” said superintendent Steve Parker.

However, the school board asked VMDO Architects to come up with more exact financial numbers and they came up with $9.3 million versus the $10.5 million that was originally presented. Although the project cost is conjecture at this time, it is based on the school board’s approved concept for new school facilities, he added…