Ag Complex Discussed As Part Of USD 364 Board of Education Meeting

Marysville USD 364 School Board hit pause on hiring a construction manager to complete projects designated as priorities that would use remaining bond funds, as the recent construction project, including the new activity center came in under budget. Various ideas had been considered, and school officials had interviewed two project managers within the past week, however Superintendent Bill Mullins indicated at Wednesday night’s monthly meeting that he would wait with passing along those recommendations pending board discussion later in the meeting that could revisit an earlier proposal to complete an ag education complex to the south of the new activity center. That was dropped as initial cost estimates were higher than remaining bond funds.

That conversation was prompted by a group of district patrons that had met a week earlier and showed up Wednesday with over fifty people in attendance. During public comment, Jim Borgerding, representing the FFA Alumni Organization spoke in favor of considering an ag complex, connected to the main building. He cited student access and safety concerns going outside to classroom space in the metal building south of the Jr./Sr. high. He pointed out the importance of ag and tech education and went on indicating that any district investment in the now 30 and 50-year-old metal buildings being used would be money wasted.

Allie Argo spoke as a member of the kids committee, a group of parents who lobbied the community for successful passage of the bond issue that went to a public vote. She also highlighted safety and security concerns, as these were first and foremost among benefits sold to voters. The initial third phase considered called for removal of the metal buildings, and addition of an updated ag complex. She urged using the bond monies as originally planned and proposed. Concluding her comments, she also emphasized the value of ag and vocational skills, asking the board to reopen bids and explore feasibility of a connected ag complex, urging visits of updated facilities at area schools.

The matter was discussed by the board later in the meeting, and KNDY News will have additional follow-up on that, as well as other board actions in future news stories.