Tipp City Board OKs first step for bond issue to raise money for new classrooms

The Tipp City Exempted Village Schools Board of Education voted Friday to approve the first step needed to place a bond issue to raise $35.75 million for new classrooms on the May ballot.

The vote followed more than an hour of discussion on bond issue options with Mark Burns of Robert W. Baird & Co. The board also met Jan. 7 with Burns and a lawyer to discuss when to seek a bond issue and for how much.

With its action Friday, the board asked the Miami County Auditor's Office to certify the millage for a 27-year bond issue to raise $35.75 million at a 4.82 percent interest rate. The bond issue amount is expected to be 5.4 mills.

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Once that is done, the board will be asked later this month to take the second step needed for the bond issue. That is to ask the Miami County Board of Elections to place the request on the May ballot. The request must be filed by early February to be before voters in May.

Board member Corine Doll supported the bond approach selected by the board, calling it "straight forward" to explain to voters.

The board will ask voters to support a plan to add on to the L.T. Ball school off North Hyatt Street to provide new classrooms for students through the fifth grade. The students now attend L.T. Ball Intermediate, Broadway Elementary and Nevin Coppock Elementary. The two elementary buildings would be closed.

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The district is working with the Ohio Schools Facilities Commission on the plan and has been approved for its Expedited Local Partnership Program. Under the ELPP, the district could build and then receive reimbursement for a portion of the cost when its number for state funding comes up for payment.

School leaders will discuss that program and the proposed project at a community engagement meeting scheduled Tuesday, Jan. 15, at 6:30 p.m. at L.T. Ball school on North Hyatt Street.

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