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BOE seeks $29 million in state money for new Newton High
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The Newton County Board of Education is expected to approve a recommendation at their Tuesday meeting to apply for more than $29 million from the state to assist in the construction of a replacement high school for Newton High.

At the beginning of each fiscal year, school systems can apply to the Georgia Department of Education for funding for projects that are included in a current and approved facilities plan, according to the recommendation made by Newton County School System Superintendent Dr. Gary Mathews. The construction of a replacement high school and the phasing out of NHS was included in the board’s five-year facilities plan.

The actual amount the system is applying for is $29,169,232. If approved, the money would be funded by the state using Qualified School Construction Bonds (QSCB), which are authorized federally through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

The total cost expected to construct and equip the new high school is estimated at $43 million.

"Funds from the sale QSCB’s, Special Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) III and other local sources of revenue will be required to fully fund the project," according to the recommendation. "Once the state legislature appropriates the funding, bonds will be sold… Designated capital outlay funds will be available after bonds are sold; however, school systems may begin projects sooner utilizing local funds. On July 27, the school system applied for authorization to issue QSCB’s for $11 million to ensure adequate initial funding."

It is anticipated that the bonds will be issued by Dec. 31, 2010. Construction is expected to begin in April 2011 and be completed by July 2013.