One Cent sales tax already being used for District One improvements

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Upgraded Palmetto Practice Field

By David Meade

Anderson School District One already has several projects underway that are being funded by the One Cent Education Sales Tax that went into effect in Anderson County in March. The Palmetto High School Football Practice Field extension has recently been completed. The $29,000 project included new practice field with new sod adjacent to the Palmetto High School football stadium.

Powdersville Practice Field work underway
Powdersville Practice Field work underway

Construction on a new Powdersville High School practice field is underway and is expected to be completed by mid July. The field is located between Powdersville High and Powdersville Middle. Cost on the project is $367,000. Other projects are planned over the next two years.

Funds from the sales tax are collected by the SC Dept. of Revenue and distributed to school districts on a quarterly basis. The funds can only be used for capital improvements.

Anderson School District One stated to voters that planned projects will include installation, maintenance and improvement of security and public safety measures; acquisition or updating of technology hardware, software and necessary infrastructure,; repairing or replacing roofs and HVAC systems; constructing, improving, renovation and equipping instructional, fine arts or athletic spaces or facilities; acquiring land to construct new school facilities and acquiring student transportation vehicles.

Anderson School District One is allocated 30.01 percent of the total revenues collected from the tax in Anderson County, which are being estimated at $13,760,979. District One’s share will amount to an expected $4.4 million each year.

Ten percent of the total collected by the District must be used to offset debt. The District One Board decided they will use twenty percent to pay on debt. That amounts to $880,000 per year.

During 2015-2016 school year, the District expects to receive $3,520,000 from the one cent sales tax.

District One Superintendent David Havird recently presented the Board a list of the planned projects that will be paid by the funding.

First priority is safety and security.

The District plans to spend $400,000 during the fall of this year for safety and security enhancements at all 14 schools in District One.

That will include additional cameras, access doors and communication equipment.

Palmetto and Wren Middle Schools will get roof improvements amounting to $120,000.

During the winter months going into 2016, District One plans to spend $900,000 on technology hardware, instructional software and new computers for teachers and labs in all 14 schools.

In the Spring of 2016 media centers will get updated digital and print materials. The amount for each school will be based on student enrollment.

Band, Fine Arts and Physical Eduation equipment and production technologies at all schools will be upgraded.

All schools will get new equipment, and science and STEM labs will be updated. Cost has not been determined.

The District plans to purchase one large activity bus at $122,000 and one small activity bus at $42,000.

Anderson School District 1&2 will have undetermined amount of funds allocated to upgrade equipment and programs.

Next year, in the fall of 2016, a six room addition is being planned for Concrete Primary at a projected cost of $2.1 million.

Spring of 2007, Powdersville and Wren tennis courts will be upgraded at a cost of $400,000.

During the summer of 2017, Palmetto High School will get a new multi-purpose Athletic Facility at a cost of $1.2 million.

Later that year, Wren High will get a new weight room and stadium upgrades with new restrooms and new concession stands. Projected cost will be $2.7 million.

Summer of 2018, the District plans to set aside $500,000 for HVAC improvements as needed.