By MARINA WATERS
Daniel Boone High School’s baseball program is a step closer to renovating one of the team’s buildings.
In a 7-1 vote, the board chose to put $2,500 towards architectural drawings to renovate a current baseball building. School board member Phillip McLain voted against the motion while school board member Annette Buchanan was absent.
School board member Chad Fleenor, who made the motion, said the press box is difficult to reach and that the bottom half of the building has a history of flooding.
“They can’t find a use for it and it has an upstairs press box that’s hard to get to if you have anybody with disabilities,” Fleenor said, “They’ve decided they’d like to replace that building and they have asked for permission to do that and we have kicked it around a couple of times and we asked them for an architectural drawing.”
Fleenor added that the team has raised money for the project, but architectural drawings are also needed. School board member Jason Day said he felt it would be fair for the team to foot the architect’s bill if the drawings are approved by the board and if they aren’t, he said, the board could pay.
McLain asked what happens if the project cost is projected outside of the funds the team has raised for the building, in which case board members said the BOE could vote the drawings down. Director of Schools Bill Flanary added that if a project exceeds $10,000 it must be bid out.
“At some point it leaves the baseball team and it comes in here,” Flanary said. “The bid will be accepted by you.”
School board member Mitch Meredith asked where the $2,500 would come from. Finance Director Brad Hale said there were a few line items the cost could fall under, but that with a new budget season up ahead, now is the time to start figuring where it fits in the school system’s financials.
“There are funds right now because we have a few items in the budget (available) for things like this,” Hale said. “As we get closer to the end of our budget year, these budget line items that are for things like this will dry up. Right now I can still handle $2,500. Keep in mind as we keep going, it will get tighter as we get to the end of the year.”
Boone’s baseball team isn’t the only one looking for a repurposed space; at the board’s last meeting for 2018, the BOE unanimously approved a motion to allow alternative use of the agriculture building at David Crockett High School for other school-related programs such as athletics.
McLain said Crockett’s baseball coaches asked for permission to utilize the space. The approved motion came after Flanary received permission from the state’s commissioner of agriculture for the school to use the space for other school and athletic programs.
In considering the future use of the building, BOE Chairman Keith Ervin suggested that the board consider adding a gym floor, bathrooms, or other upgrades to the building. But like Boone’s press box building, school officials said they would want to get an architect involved in any changes and renovations.
“It was the baseball team coaches that came forward requesting to be able to do something with it,” McLain said. “They kind of wanted to, as I understood it, piecemeal put it together, but it can’t be done that way. We have to get an architect involved, it has to be done by a reputable company so that we don’t have any liability issues when it’s finished. But it’s my desire for it to be that multipurpose so that it can be for their needs and others.”