Jason Mann Board of Education CFO

Daniel Dye / The Herald

Elmore County Board of Education chief financial officer Jason Mann, right, indicates to board members than the $56.9 million bond will be available on Dec. 23.

The Elmore County Board of Education unanimously approved a $56.9 million bond at its regularly scheduled meeting Monday afternoon held at Holtville High School.

“We started this discussion two years ago,” Elmore County Schools superintendent Richard Dennis said. “We’ve been working on putting something in place to meet the challenges we have with our capital outlay. I came in (as superintendent) in January of 2017 and we had a major overhaul of the capital plan. Since then, we’ve gone back and tweaked it. 

Watching the bond process take place was fascinating to watch.”

Dennis said the money will be available to the school board Monday.

“This has been a long, 24-month process,” school board chief financial officer Jason Mann said. “There’s been a lot of negotiations and planning. We’ve seen a lot growth (in the number of students) in those 24 months. The marketplace and timing worked out great for us. We were able to get an outstanding rate and achieve the bond amount we needed to fulfill the growth.”

Mann indicated two outstanding loans of $11.4 million were refinanced into this bond.

“The money will go into an investment account where we can earn money before we do the draws,” Mann said.

Dennis and the board have discussed plans for the money at previous meetings.

Dennis said the money will go toward building a new school middle school located in the Redland Road area; an additional building located at Elmore County Technical Center; an updated entrance at Elmore County High School; a new band room at Stanhope Elmore High School; improvements to the baseball and softball facilities at Holtville High School; and other construction projects are on the horizon.

Dennis informed the board a recent state bus inspection, which is an annual occurrence, found no incidence of any type.

“We had one major issue that was found (on a bus) inadvertently last year,” he said. “This year, the buses came up perfectly clean. That is outstanding. It is incredible what our guys do with our buses.”

In other action, the board:

• Unanimously approved financials for November

• Unanimously approved the 2020-2021 school calendar

• Unanimously approved minutes from the board meeting held Dec. 4

The next regularly scheduled board meeting will take place 4:30 p.m. Jan. 21 at the Elmore County Board of Education board room.