Tensions rise at Muscogee School Board meeting

Tensions rise at Muscogee School Board meeting

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Monday night's school board meeting was two jammed into one. Generally the board meets twice in a month but with December shortened by a holiday break, the meeting was the discussion session and the work session combined.

There were three major talking points: the new gym at Fort Middle School, the new law counsel to be adopted by Muscogee County School System and whether the school board should have to display all of their transactions on their website.  

The new gym at Fort Middle School was originally discussed in 2009 but had to be pushed back due to other more pressing projects. The 2009 budget called for $2.9 million. The new 2015 budget calls for $5.1 million.

The reason for the major increase was because originally the plan called for a standalone gym.  In the years in between, the School Board determined that they wanted to revise the plan to incorporate new locker rooms and shower facilities.

The board determined that the old ones were inadequate and it was necessary to upgrade those facilities. The budget passed unanimously.

Next was the new legal counsel. The former legal counsel of the school Hatcher, Stubbs, Land, Hollis & Rothschild LLP, is breaking up and will no longer be able be the school's counsel. Instead a group of individuals selected by the superintendent. The group interviewed five different law firms and decided to move forward with Hall Booth, and Smith. 

Lastly there was a heated debate about the school displaying all of their expenses on the school board's website.  After much deliberation, it was determined that the wording was too similar to a previous policy that had been passed in September.

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