News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

February 8, 2014

Aquatics center on school board meeting agenda

Renovation of Hoosier Prairie up for discussion

TERRE HAUTE — On Monday, the Vigo County School Board will consider a long-term lease agreement that enables the district to build an aquatics center at Voorhees Park.

The Terre Haute Parks Board approved the lease at its Jan. 24 meeting.

The $9.8 million aquatics center will replace aging pools at Terre Haute North Vigo High School, Terre Haute South Vigo High School and West Vigo High School.

Groundbreaking is slated for June, with the aquatics center set to open in August 2015.

The agreement calls for an initial 25-year lease for $1, with an option to renew for two subsequent 25-year terms, or a total of 75 years. The school district will lease about eight acres of the 11-acre park.

The lease calls for the school district to maintain the facility and leased property, while the city parks would maintain the rest of the park.

The school district also would be responsible for such things as insurance and utilities for the property it leases.

The board will meet at 6 p.m. in the administration building, 686 Wabash Ave.

In other matters, the board will be asked for permission to conduct a public hearing at the Feb. 24 board meeting related to a proposed renovation of Hoosier Prairie Elementary.

The project will provide the school with interior walls and doors; currently, it has an “open concept” design, said Donna Wilson, chief financial officer. The project also will include energy savings measures, such as lighting, windows and controls.

The project would not exceed $2 million, she said. It will likely be done as an energy savings project and paid through Capital Projects Funding. “It will add nothing to the tax rate,” Wilson said.

Planning is still being finalized, she said.

In a related matter, the board will be asked for permission to hire Energy Systems Group for potential energy-related renovations at Hoosier Prairie Elementary.

Also, the board will be asked to approve:

n Collective bargaining agreements with the Secretarial Association and the Custodial and Maintenance Association. The employees will receive a 2.2 percent increase in the wage scale, with no step increases. Also, the district assumes the first 1 percent of the 2 percent increase in health insurance premiums.

n A consultant services agreement with the offices of Brown and Brown of Indiana, LLC (dba RE Sutton and Associates). The consultant services are for health, dental and prescription insurance. The term would be for one year and renew through 2016, and it would be paid a consultant services fee of $15,000 per year.

Also, the board will consider a resolution of memoriam to honor Emmitt M. Tyler, a former science and math teacher at Gerstmeyer High School and math teacher at Terre Haute North Vigo.

Under spotlights, Doug Dillion and Rick Stevens will highlight this year’s Counselor Academy. Also, Larry Hopper of the Vigo County Sheriff’s Department will present K-9 plaques to the school district and Honey Creek Middle School.

Sue Loughlin can be reached at 812 231-4235 or

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