The Madison Central School District may face some challenges justifying building a new gym when it is faced with the prospect of making up a 5% cut in state aid to education. Asking local voters to make up another $275K in the annual budget might require giving up the $2.9 million the district says the new gym will cost.
Then again, if we're being quoted $2.9 million for a 40,000-square-foot facility with a 2500-seat gym, we might want to run with that bargain. Shopping around the neighborhood, I learn Wolsey-Wessington just built a new gym that cost $2.2 million. As a Class B gym, I would expect it is markedly smaller seat-wise than Madison's proposed arena. Highmore-Harrold just built a new gym, too. Superintendent Frank Palleria says that facility has just 300 seats. (Palleria, a former Madison super, also tells me a new gym for Madison is "long overdue.").
So $2.7 million gets Highmore-Harrold 300 seats, but $2.9 million will get Madison 2500 seats? I remain skeptical of the numbers we're getting locally.
Update 15:49 CST: I learn from MDL that my friends Matt and Penni Groce are holding an organizational meeting for the new "Vote Yes for MHS Committee" tonight at 7 at the MHS lunchroom.
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