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January 17, 2013

DPS bond expenditures explained

DUNCAN — Duncan Public Schools is keeping a close eye on where bond money is being spent and has devised a way to make that money even more visible to Duncan residents.

Assistant Superintendent Rodney Calhoun is in charge of the school district’s financials. And following a meeting with the school’s bonding adviser, Calhoun worked to track the bond money by dividing into the four areas it will be used.

“We sat down with McDonald and Associates to get a better grasp on where the money will be spent,” Calhoun said.

The four areas include revenue bonds, which is the main renovation of the Duncan High School; technology, which has money given over a period of time to keep technology current; pay-as-you-go bonds, which are used for mechanisms in the school, such as air conditioning; and instructional materials, which includes textbooks.

The bond issue was approved by a super majority vote of Duncan residents Feb. 14, 2012. Since that time, the $19.03 million bond issue has been under development, including a layout of the project.

Calhoun said the work being done to prepare for construction are usual expenditures associated with bond issue projects.

While some of the funds will be used to pay for services rendered by the bonding company, architect and construction company, more than $14.777 million will remain to be used toward the heart of the project.

He said keeping a close watch on the money will ensure the money is spent the way is meant to be.

“We want to make sure the money goes where it’s supposed to,” Calhoun said.

Calhoun said the idea is to not where the money is going and to let the community know what’s happening with bond money, which is made up of ad valorem taxes those same residents pay.

He said this keeps Duncan residents more in the know of how the money is being spent, which is one of the main goals of the school district.

“That’s one of the reasons we wanted to divide it into the four tracking categories,” Calhoun said.

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