Last updated: August 22. 2014 11:25AM -
By - mstrother@civitasmedia.com

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The Troup County Board of Education on Thursday approved the transfer of the former Cannon Street Elementary School building to the city of LaGrange.

The move will still need to be approved by LaGrange City Council, but the Board of Education vote Thursday gives school board Chairman Sheila Rowe and Superintendent Cole Pugh authority to sign off on the documentation pending council’s approval. The transfer of ownership does not include any payments between the entities.

“I think this is a very good move on our part,” Rowe said before Thursday’s vote. “I’m glad to see that the building will be utilized for that community.”

School officials said they had discussed with LaGrange Mayor Jim Thornton and City Manager Tom Hall ideas about the transfer prior to bringing the action before the board. Hall told the Daily News that the city currently plans to allow the building to be used by community groups, however he noted City Council has yet to weigh in on the plan.

The Boys and Girls Club of West Georgia currently leases a part of the building, and the Up All Night events to feed area needy and disabled on Thanksgiving, Christmas and Martin Luther King Jr. Day have used the school’s kitchen for years. Officials said the transfer would not affect those groups’ use of the building.

In another matter, the Board of Education on Thursday also approved a contract with Rycars Construction LLC of Atlanta for $261,375 to re-roof Berta Weathersbee Elementary School. The roofing material on most of the building has worn out and started to leak, said John Radcliffe, assistant superintendent of maintenance and operations.

Radcliffe said work on re-roofing is expected to begin within 30 days, following work on asbestos abatement for asbestos-lined flashing and ducting materials outside. The abatement work and construction would be done in the evenings, after school.

The work will be funded through the school system’s special-purpose, local-option sales tax, or SPLOST.

Also Thursday, the board approved:

• Adoption of the $1.7 million grant from Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning the that will fund Troup County schools’ pre-k program for 2014-2015.

• Applying for combined CTAE - career, technical, agricultural and engineering - grants totaling $248,951 to fund CTAE-related programs.

• A purchase order of $47,997.14 in SPLOST funds to Woods Sealing and Striping Inc. of Five Points, Alabama, to repave the west bus entrance asphalt driveway due to breakage and settlement of asphalt.

• A purchase order of $37,890 from State Youth Apprenticeship Grant funds to West Georgia RESA for the school system’s Youth Apprenticeship Program Contract. The contract will continue the school system’s existing services as a member of a consortia among Troup, Heard and Meriwether counties to employ the services of Dave Lewis to supervise the Youth Apprenticeship Work-Based Learning Program.

• A purchase order of $165,126 from the general fund to West Georgia RESA for the pro-rata share of the Burwell fiscal year 2015 budget for services provided by the Burwell Program, a therapeutically based education program that serves students with diagnosed emotional or behavioral problems. Burwell campuses are located the West Georgia Tech facility on Fort Drive and Callaway High School.

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