More than $1 million in infrastructure improvements are on their way to the Tuloso-Midway Independent School District, with school officials planning to use unspent bond money to fund the work.
A presentation was made by Raymond Gignac, of Gignac and Associates, to the TMISD Board of Trustees during their Nov. 11 scheduled meeting regarding proposed renovations to the high school's track and field facilities, as well as the parking lots at the district's high and middle school campuses.
Also included in the preliminary project scope is work to address plumbing and drainage issues at the primary school. That part of the project involves improving drainage around the perimeter of the school, as well as the installation of a sump pump system underneath the school, an area school officials learned earlier this year was collecting water during heavy rainfall.
The track work, Gignac said, would involve the demolition and reconstruction of the high school's track, and would add the ability to host 100-meter dash events on either side of the track. Currently, the track only offers one side of the track for that particular event, Gignac said.
In addition, the project would double the amount of high jump space and add an area for shot put events. There is no space, however, to build a discus throwing area, Gignac said, though the district and architect are considering alternative sites.
The TMISD is planning to conduct the $1.4 million in renovations using leftover funds from the district's 2006 Series Bonds, Interim Superintendent Sue Nelson said, since the work was originally proposed under the district's initial bond projects list.
Gignac said the goal is to get those projects awarded by early December, with construction tentatively scheduled to be completed by May.
In other school business:
Trustees unanimously approved a refinancing of $1.7 million in 2000 and 2001 Series Bonds that will save the district an estimated $75,228 over the next seven years. That repayment period is in line with the district's plan to repay that group of debt, financial consultant Ricardo Rodriguez said, and will not be extended. A $500 raise in annual salaries for all district employees was unanimously approved by board members that will be funded with money received as a result of the district's recent Tax Ratification Election.
The district is expected to receive $300,000 annually in additional state and tax revenue funding as a result of the TRE, school officials have said. About $210,000 is being set aside for the $500 raise approved by trustees last week, while the remaining $90,000 will go toward repayment of the $2.5 million maintenance tax loan unanimously approved by trustees at the same meeting, Nelson said.
Board members elected or chosen by voters to return in the Nov. 2 General Election were sworn in during the Nov. 11 meeting, following the canvassing of the elections results.
Rosemary De Leon was the only new member of the board to take the oath of office last week, with returning board members Billy Lerma, John Samaniego and Jan Mostella joining her on the board.
De Leon defeated former trustee Sylvia Longoria-Hill in the election, while Lerma won his race over former TMISD educator Ofelia Reyes. Mostella and Samaniego were unopposed.