|Monday night, commissioners
said no to the school board's request to spend an extra $57,000.00 to
put a rubberized surface the new running track at Loudon High School.
The track has been a point of much discussion and debate thus far. School board members had been told there would be no cost in local taxes to build the track. The entire project would be paid for by a $250,000.00 grant through the state for diabetes prevention. However at the last minute, some school officials and board members decided they wanted to add the rubber surface to the track.
Only Commissioners David Meers, Brian Jenkins, Harold Duff and Sharon Yarbrough voted to allow the board to spend the extra $57,000.00. Commissioner Meers made the motion to give the board the money but he stated that he felt like "his back was against the wall" but he "wont do it again." Not sure what that means.
The quarter million dollar grant was awarded to Loudon County schools for a community walking/running track. According to the grant request "Funds from this award, if granted, will be used to complete a walking/running track at Loudon High School, which will be used by students, staff, and community". No one seems to know how the project turned into a high school competition running track.
The request also states the need for the track to be because the children of Loudon County are too fat. So apparently it is now the government's problem but a new track will fix the fat problem. And lastly the grant request states that the track would be an asset to the city of Loudon because there is no existing track in the area. If I'm not mistaken, there is a very nice, long walking/running track at the city park right beside the high school.
Anyway, commission said no to the money. But you know, maybe I've been in the politics too long, but something gives me the feeling this aint over yet. Let's wait and see. After all, as some would say, it's JUST $57,000.00.