Hamilton County commissioners re-visit funding for Central High - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Hamilton County commissioners re-visit funding for Central High School track

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HAMILTON COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

At last week’s Hamilton County commission meeting, five members abstained their vote for a resolution to fund a new track at Central High School.

On Wednesday, the proposal was brought back to the floor.

"If you walk about 20 feet you can reach down with your fingers, you can grab that top layer and just peel it off," described Steven Lewis, CHS Athletic Director.

That along with mold and flooding are just some of the reasons Central High and Brown Middle Schools are seeking funds for a new track.

"The cracks are so bad that the kids are falling, our community members that use the track in the mornings and in the evenings are having accidents the facilities are to the point where they are not usable," said community member Tonia Martin.

It’s why Hamilton County Commissioner Chair Chester Bankston and Harrison community members are requesting $500,000 from county bond funds to replace the facility.

Last week, four commissioners voted in favor, but the remaining five abstained because they wanted more information.

"I cannot in good conscience spend this amount of money on one project. If the funds will not be available for the future for our projects. I’m saying this is a wonderful idea to replace it, to spend money, but there's no money left,” said Greg Beck, District 5 Commissioner.

Community members said they understand that this would be a large investment for just one community. Commissioners asked that by next meeting the school board provide a list of long-term projects across the district.

“You cannot split that between nine school district and make a major capital improvement for any of them; it will not even scratch the surface and so for us to find a way to make a list for all the county projects to hopefully be put on the list,” Martin said.

Chairman Bankston clarified at the meeting that funding is not to exceed the requested amount. Any remaining funds will go back to the county.

Commissioners will meet next week to re-vote on the resolution.
 

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