You can blame the rising costs of Joplin R-8 School District construction on the little things.
You know, those pesky little things that drive up the costs of all government projects.
Chief Financial Officer Paul Barr explained those things to the R-8 Board of Education earlier tonight.
Part of it was problems stemming from old mining operations at the Joplin High School site. The unforeseen problems have put that project $5.4 million behind, Barr said. Of course, more money will be coming from FEMA and SEMA later on, he added.
And then there were the other little things, odds and ends that R-8 Administration decided to spend money on and Barr explained the reasoning. "We did them because we might get more money from naming rights," and he noted "these were things we would have to add later."
Things every school needs- "lighting and artificial turf at multiple athletic facilities. We will save money over time," Barr said. "And expanding from four to eight tennis courts. We can qualify for conference matches now," Barr said, allaying the fears of those who felt Joplin might never be the host site for a conference tennis tournament.
On the long term stuff, Barr said, "we're still short seven to eight million dollars.
The solution, he said, was to hire financial adviser George K. Baum and Associates, who will guide the district through this financial stumble, charging only $20,000 to find short-term financing and a percentage of the financing, probably around $25,000 for the long-term, probably 20-year-financing.
But don't worry, Barr said. "We might be able to pay it off early.
That should happen after the naming rights are sold to middle school science fair projects.
(The Board approved hiring the adviser by a 7-0 vote.)