Plan that would see Clinton Area Technology Center acquire SCC Clinton Center finalized locally, headed for state approval

Posted August 30, 2017 at 9:17 am

The acquisition process of the Somerset Community College-Clinton Center is now complete at the local level and is in the hands of the Kentucky Department of Education, which is expected to give its final approval to the purchase later this year.

The final of two required public hearings to take comments on the amended Facility Plan, which has already been approved by both the Local Planning Committee (LPC) and Clinton County Board of Education was held last Thursday, August 24 at the Central Office before hearing officer Tim Eaton with the Kentucky School Boards Association.

The local facility planning committee was called back into service to review and amend the school district’s facility plan when the acquisition of the Clinton Center came into play.

The facility, constructed in 2005, is being purchased at a much, much lower price than the actual worth of the building and property, but the transition will benefit both Somerset Community College and the Clinton County School District.

SCC will continue to offer classes in one part of the facility and the building will become the new home of the Clinton County Area Technology Center and Central Office. The existing Area Tech Center will be used for storage once the change is made in the coming weeks.

Eaton, who gave an overview of the process prior to the public hearing last week, noted the cost in savings to the district due to the renovation costs it would take on the existing area technology center.

Only one public comment was made last week, that being from Walton “Chip” Haddix, who praised the move to acquire the Clinton Center, but also continued to push for the “nickel” tax he and others advocate for that would help construct a new high school using matching state funds from the five cents on every $100 in taxes collected under such a tax.

The nickel tax revenue also could only be used for facility construction, but no action by the local board has been taken on such a measure at this time.

Haddix noted in his comment last week that the purchase of the KTCTS building for just a nickel on the dollar saved the school district millions in construction costs, but went on to urge the school district to direct its engineers to begin a study on the cost of a new high school and to pass a nickel tax for such a construction project.

Superintendent Charlotte Nasief noted that no other oral or written comments had been made.

The final proposal (amended plan) will now be presented to the Kentucky Department of Education who will consider the final plan at its October board meeting.

Superintendent Nasief, however, noted that actual transition from the old area tech center to the Clinton Center could possibly begin to be made sooner than the October KDE meeting and noted she would keep the public updated on that situation.

The public hearings, in which two are required, were steps in a process to revise and submit the amended facility plan that includes the Clinton Center, but also continues to list prioritized facility needs, including repairs and additions at all of the other existing schools in the district.

The superintendent also thanked the Local Planning Committee, noting without their work and dedication, the project could not have moved forward.