School board considers how to spend $9 million

By Becky Brewster

The Culberson County-Allamoore ISD Board of Trustees met in Regular Session on October 7, 2019. The Board held a lengthy discussion on possible capital expenditures for the 2019 bond funds, noting that only about $1M of the approved $10M has been allocated thus far. Only two board members had submitted their funding priorities (wish lists) before the meeting. The Board agreed that the District needs to make sure everything on the new campus project is completed. A new Athletic Complex Plan was discussed to include a softball field, tennis courts, parking lots and sidewalks, concession stand, fencing, and retaining walls. After deciding turf would be the best option for the fields, Supt. Ken Baugh was instructed to obtain pricing for all components of the complex. To be in compliance with Title IX, the District needs to make sure that at the very least, the softball field is constructed. Noting that most items in the academic areas have now been acquired, other items discussed included additional parking/sidewalks, upgrades to the board room, housing, upgrades to the auditorium, bus barns, development of the ponding area, and covering for three outdoor areas. Baugh will also get estimates on these items so the Board will then be able to start prioritizing the final list of projects.

Board attorney Steve Mitchell reported that the District had purchased a property on 7th and Houston Streets through a tax sale for the base price of $39,400. Mitchell noted that the property owner has six months to redeem the property for cost plus 25% and fees. The majority of the purchase price will come back to the District through the allocation of the back property taxes.

Trustee Eddie Seyffert reported that he was impressed with the 4th and 6th-8th graders that are working with Blue Origin to develop a microgravity experiment to be taken into space on the next New Shepherd mission. CCAISD has purchased payload space for this project. Blue Origin engineers held a brainstorming session with the students to begin the process.

Sondra McCoy, Director of Academic Programs, reported that the District has received a Lone Star Grant to enhance the pathway in computer science. This is part of an initiative with the State of Texas to address the 1.2M unfilled computer-related jobs projected for 2026. She also noted that two seniors are on track to graduate with an Associate’s Degree.

In other business, the CCAISD Board members:

Approved nominees for CCAD Board of Directors.

Approved the 4th Quarter Investment Report.

Held a short executive session with no action taken.

Heard updates from the Athletic Director Brock Tyrrell.

Heard about the implementation of the new reading program “ARC.”

Scheduled the next regular meeting for November 18, 2019 at 6 p.m.