After years of waiting, Boulder City was told Thursday that its World War II-era high school would finally resume the rebuild started in 2004.
The Clark County School Board decided Thursday to spend much of the $54 million remaining from a 1998 bond issue on Phase 2 of Boulder City High School’s four-phased replacement. In addition to Boulder City’s $16.4 million rehabilitation of about 25 classrooms and administrative space, the committee recommended an $18 million elementary school building at West Preparatory Academy.
The school, near Lake Mead and Martin Luther King boulevards, serves students in kindergarten through 12th grade. All of West Prep’s elementary students except kindergartners use portable classrooms, according to district Chief Financial Officer Jim McIntosh.
The plan also calls for $4.5 million in additions at Wynn and Ronzone elementary schools. Wynn, near Edna Avenue and Jones Boulevard, is at double its capacity, using 18 portable classrooms to get by. Ronzone, near Jones and Lake Mead boulevards, also is at double its capacity and uses 20 portable classrooms.
A rural Clark County school would also receive some attention. Sandy Valley’s many “unsafe” portable elementary classrooms would be replaced, and the temporary tent-covered gym would be replaced with a permanent gym at a total cost of $4.6 million, McIntosh said.
The plan includes replacement of cooling towers for the air-conditioning systems of 16 schools, costing $5.46 million total.
Public comments from Boulder City government officials and the community helped sway the School Board away from an alternate use of the money that would’ve entailed spending $29 million to replace 51-year-old Bell Elementary School near Sahara Avenue and Interstate 15. Stavan Corbett was the only board member to vote against the spending plan, noting that Bell — a school he represents — sits at the top of the district’s list for reconstruction based on the condition of its facilities, and that scientific process should be followed.
Like Boulder City High School, the district had made promises of a new school to the community Bell serves, but then told Bell to wait after voters turned down the district’s ballot question for a $669 million property tax increase in 2012.
Thursday’s meeting also included another spending plan for contingencies, using most of the district’s $74.6 million garnered from the hotel room tax, real-property transfer tax and governmental services tax.
The contingency fund was started after Durango High School’s air conditioning failed at the beginning of last school year, causing the school to close for almost two days. The plan calls for $61.4 million in planned projects and setting aside $13.3 million for emergencies. Planned expenses include $12 million for new roofs at seven schools and new sewer systems at three schools for a total $6.9 million.
Boulder City residents are just happy with the idea of being halfway done with their upgrade. A new fine arts building is planned in Phase 3 and better sports fields and facilities in Phase 4.
Contact Trevon Milliard at email@example.com or 702-383-0279. Find him on Twitter: @TrevonMilliard.