Let's Build Some New Schools

County Commissioners put the last piece of the puzzle in place at Monday's commission meeting to begin the long awaited Phase 1 of the school building plan.

In a 9-1 vote, commissioners approved borrowing the estimated $43,000,000.00 needed to construct the new school at Greenback, a new middle school in Loudon and make the improvements at Philadelphia school. The only dissenting vote came from commissioner Sharon Yarbrough who preferred borrowing the money at a variable rate rather than a fixed rate.

Commissioner Austin Shaver made the motion, second by commissioner Don Miller, to borrow the 43 mil. on a 25 year note at a fixed rate of approximately 3.00%. The motion passed. According to the county's financial adviser, the first $10,000,000.00 installment of the loan should be in the bank by the end of this month.

Bids on the excavation for the Greenback school will go out this Thursday with the excavation bids on the Loudon middle school to follow shortly. The Greenback, and Loudon bids will be opened within the month at which time grade work can begin. The building construction bids will follow shortly there after.

After years and years of waiting, the building program is now a reality. Commissioners and school board members should be applauded for making all the hard choices that have led to this point.