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The School Board discusses turf financing options during its meeting Thursday.

The School Board approved a proposal Thursday from Kaw Valley Bank that will finance new turf for the district’s football stadium. 

Superintendent Stu Moeckel presented financing options from both First American and Kaw Valley Bank. The loans would both be for $1.25 million over six years, according to the proposal documents.

“We feel like both of them are good opportunities,” Moeckel said. ‘At this point, we would look to do a six-year. We feel very confident in our financial stability that we could handle $225,000 out of our capital outlay every year.”

While the loans would be for the same amount, the main difference between the two proposals is the interest rate. Kaw Valley offered a 2.25% interest rate, while First American offered a 2.27% interest rate, according to each of their proposal documents. 

Moeckel recommended the board go with Kaw Valley Bank for the financing of the district stadium’s new turf. Board member Eric Votaw asked what exactly the loan could be used for.

“At this point, we are approving the financing, but are we approving a specific project to be financed as well?” Votaw said. 

Moeckel said the loan would be used mostly for the turf, but there might be some leftover funds that could be used on other projects related to the stadium. 

“The reason it’s titled ‘District Stadium Project’ is that if the turf comes in and it’s only $30,000 to $40,000, we would look for some other stadium upgrades, potentially adding a patio-type area behind the concession stand back there,” Moeckel said.

Other possible upgrades could include new runways for pole vault and javelin and new stadium lighting, Moeckel said. 

“We’re approving a line of credit, essentially, that we can tap into for different projects,” Votaw said. 

The board voted unanimously to approve the financing proposal from Kaw Valley Bank. The project would not start until summer.  

“We would probably not need a payment to the turf company until we get into June/July as we start that work,” Moeckel said. 

Moeckel also presented the board with two contracting proposals from the companies Hellas and Mammoth, which would provide and install the turf. Moeckel said he preferred Hellas’ turf over Mammoth’s because he liked the padding they installed underneath that would allow for easier replacement of the turf in the future. 

“I think both these companies are very standup companies and we’d be honored to work with both of them, but at this point, my recommendation would be to go with Hellas for our district turf project,” Moeckel said. 

The board unanimously voted to approve the contracting option from Hellas.

In other news, the board discussed two easement transfers from the city that would allow the city to temporarily own a part of the land in front of Eudora Elementary School so the city can build part of a walkway there.

“The city is looking to expand their walkway down by Casey’s and from Church [Street] all the way down to Peach Street, which we believe is going to be amazing for our school, especially if students were to take that path,” Moeckel said.

Board member Mike Kelso asked if the walkway would be paid for by the city. Moeckel said the project would not be funded by the school district. 

“Yes, that would be the city’s responsibility. They’re just asking for an easement to come onto our land to do that work,” Moeckel said.

Both easement transfers were approved unanimously by the board. Moeckel said the construction of the walkway would change traffic patterns drastically, so they would wait until the summer to start.

“We wouldn’t start that kind of construction until after May to try to ease our families and our busing situation,” he said. 

Reach reporter Alyssa Wingo at eudoratimes@gmail.com.

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