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Board approves new phone system, discuss bond issue

The Friona Independent School District Board of Trustees met in regular session on Monday, June 12, 2017 at the FISD Administration Building boardroom. They discussed a lengthy agenda highlighted by reports from High Road Clean Energy Managing Director Monty Humble, representatives of WTRT and Synetra, and the FHS Junior Class officers.

Former President of the Board Ricky Barnett and former board member Jose Cigarroa were honored with plaques for their service to the school system.

Jessie Galdean, new Friona Junior High Principal, spoke to the board and thanked them for the opportunity to serve them and the school system.

WTRT Representatives Billy Seaver and Rich Kendrick and Synetra Representatives Paul Ramirez, John Burk and Chris Farah presented detailed proposals for a new phone system. The board chose to go with WTRT for the updated system that will be installed throughout the school district and on all the campuses. The $65,494 price tag will be paid from the Parmer County Permanent School Fund.

The Board discussed the possibility of holding a bond election in May 2018. There are a number of concerns for the school district. New board president Becky Riethmayer was given the authority to appoint a steering committee of no less than seven and no more than fifteen people to determine the most important issues that need to be addressed for the bond election.

Monty Humble presented an update of the progress on the Mariah del Este Wind project which will be east of Friona. Work was halted on this project due to the Presidential election. They plan to meet with potential investors and be financed by the end of November 2017 with construction beginning in January 2018. The board approved the amendment to the Limitation on Appraised Value Agreement for the project completion date to be moved from December 2017 to December 2018.

The incoming Junior Class Officers and Sponsor Sandra Berend addressed the board concerning moving the Junior/Senior Prom from the Hereford Country Club to Country Rose on May 12, 2018. The board approved the move.

In other business, the board approved agreements with Underwood Law Firm for legal services, Johnson & Sheldon for auditing services, Arnold & Associates Insurance Services for student insurance and ESC 16 for support services.

Superintendent Dr. Pam Ray informed the board that the new Guardian security system was fully installed and working ‘wonderfully’ in the Primary building. The board approved to have the security system installed in the Elementary building next at a cost of $43,598.50, which will be paid from the Parmer County Permanent School Fund. The system will be installed in the main Elementary building, cafeteria, auditorium and gym as they are under the same roof.

Ray reported that enrollment was at 96.67 percent and they were down 20 children.

After a discussion it was determined that evaluation of the superintendent would be moved from January to July. This move was to make sure district numbers were available to do a fair and concise evaluation of the superintendent’s achievements and goals.

The next FISD Board of Trustees meeting will be Monday, July 10, 2017 at 7 p.m. at the Administration building. These meetings are open to the public.