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District’s buildings project set to start

Design plans for the South Williamsport School District buildings project could get under way as early as this year.

Vern McKissick, of McKissick Architecture, Harrisburg, unveiled a preliminary outline for the project at Monday night’s school board meeting.

The firm was hired by the board to develop designs, which could involve consolidating students into two school buildings and constructing a new sports stadium.

McKissick told the board a possible scenario would call for finalizing design plans for alteration and additions to Central Elementary School with construction beginning by 2021 and wrapping up in the following year.

In the meantime, construction of the sports facility, to accommodate football games and other athletic events, could be completed in either August 2021 or 2022.

McKissick gave no time frame for the junior/senior high school building project.

One district resident said at this point he doesn’t support the $29.5 million plan.

He called for the project to be scaled back and questioned the need for a new football stadium.

Another resident, Casey Lowmiller, said he was in favor of the project.

Superintendent Mark Stamm said the project will likely be supported by a tax hike.

The district’s real estate millage is at 16.78.

Board Secretary Jamie Mowery, who gave a budget presentation at the meeting, said it’s too early to tell if a tax hike will be needed for next year.

“It’s just way too early in the process,” Stamm added.

The board met in executive session following the meeting to consider legal issues.

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