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Edison board discusses field upgrades

RICHMOND — Edison Local officials heard the latest update on plans to unify athletics on its high school campus during the monthly meeting.

Jim Sauer, owner of JTSA Sports architectural firm of Burgettstown, Pa., informed school board members during the session Aug. 20 at Edison High School that work was progressing and some new facilities should be seen by winter. Superintendent Bill Beattie said a special meeting is set for Sept. 8 at 5 p.m. at EHS to approve the contractor for the fieldhouse but other plans are going forward.

“We’re moving along and looking by the end of October for the grandstand and lighting projects to begin with a completion date of Dec. 1,” he said. “We’re going to put out to bid for the concession stand, restrooms and locker rooms and that should be mid-September with completion in early March, and that should wrap up the entire project.”

The district wants to combine sporting events at EHS with new turf at the multi-purpose athletic field to host football, soccer and track activities and a sports facility boasting the new gym, as well as baseball and softball fields, a new press box and more grandstand seating, and the goal is to improve safety for students and reduce travel to current sites spread throughout the district. The baseball and softball fields are located at Jefferson State Lake near Richmond and track practice and meets and junior high basketball practice have been held at Stanton Elementary in Hammondsville. Expenses are being paid through the 2.1-mill emergency renewal levy, which would generate more than $1,049,000 annually over seven years.

So far, the new field turf has been completed but plans for the softball and baseball facilities are delayed pending an appeal by Rover Pipeline to the Ohio Department of Taxation to reduce its property tax by 50 percent. Funding from the tax would help offset expenses and hopes were to have the ballfields ready for spring sports action in 2022.

“Right now, we’re waiting for the outcome of Rover Pipeline’s appeal with the Department of Taxation to see how we’ll move forward with the facilities,” Beattie commented.

Among other action, the board:

— Employed Jenna Kuntz as a school nurse, Darlene Mason as Language Arts teacher at Edison High School and Julie Armentrout and Heather Barnhouse as NBCs at John Gregg and Stanton Elementary, respectively;

— Approved a contract with Trinity School of Nursing for student clinical nursing experiences from August to December;

— Approved agreements with Saline Township Trustees, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and Mark Clark for services as school resource officers;

— Approved agreements with Kendall Behavior Solutions for professional services and The Village Network for mental health services;

— Adopted a revised drug and alcohol policy;

— Approved a graduation seal for the 2020-21 school year;

— Scheduled the next meeting for Sept. 17 at 6 p.m. at John Gregg Elementary in Bergholz.

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