Whitfield approves $24 million school renovation

Whitfield approves $24 million school renovation

February 28th, 2011 by Adam Crisp in Local - Breaking News

DALTON, Ga. - Whitfield County School Board members today voted to go ahead with plans to re-build Eastbrook Middle School at a cost of $24.2 million.

The move almost assures that board members will need to ask voters for a renewal of the county's one-penny education sales tax in November.

Board members questioned the expense in bad economic times, but the resolution passed 3-2 with Rodney Lock and Bill Worley voting against the school.

"If you were building a house now, would you do it now?" Lock asked. "You need to know where your money is coming from."

System officials have been pushing a quick decision on Eastbrook.

"We strongly believe if you delay a decision, it's going to cost you more," said Assistant Superintendent Richard Schoen.

School leaders want to tear down the school's classroom wing and rebuild it on top of current softball and baseball fields. They plan to finance the school with a one-penny special purpose local option sales tax renewal that may come before voters in November.

Students and parents complain that Eastbrook is disrepair and is the worst school in a system with much nicer facilities.

For complete details, see tomorrow's Chattanooga Times Free Press.