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Board members question gas boom impact on schools

September 24, 2012
DEANNE JOHNSON - Staff Writer ( , Salem News

NEW WATERFORD - Board members at Crestview are questioning what impact the natural gas boom in the area will have on local schools.

At the board meeting last week, member John Garwood announced an oil and gas boom conference, which is being held on Oct. 1 at the Capital Theater in Columbus. He said the conference is supposed to discuss such topics as community impacts, environmental impacts and tax implications for schools and local government agencies.

Superintendent John Dilling said so far the school district, which has a 1 percent income tax, has seen some increased revenue due to people signing oil and gas leases. However, Dilling said there really have been no royalties yet and there is no way to know how long the boom will last.

He agreed there are a lot of unanswered questions, such as whether population will grow due to the gas and oil industries being in the area. While student population has been declining, numbers the school district have been offsetting through open enrollment, Dilling said the decline now seems to be leveling off.

"It's been all positive at this point," Dilling said. "Now if there is an environmental impact, sure that's a negative."

Dilling added that through the years, a lot of students have moved out of the area. He demonstrated it by asking board members where there children are who have graduated.

"Maybe if there are more opportunities here more will stay and become part of our community," Dilling said.

In other matters before the board:

- The board honored Ron Stratton with the Rebel Pride Award for his help through the years preparing for athletic events, especially at the track, including preparing the long jump pit and setting up the tent.

- The board approved Kimberly Gilber, Ann Hall, Herman Miller and Kathryn Vrabel as resident educator mentors for up to 50 hours of service mentoring new teachers at a rate of $17 per hour. Additionally, Dawn Moore, Tobin Bacon, Jacklynn Mercer and Charlene Mecure were approved to be paid from the high school higher education alignment grant. Finally, the board awarded supplemental contracts through the middle school formative assessment grant program to Herman Miller, Stephanie Herriott, Monica McDonough, Allison Lemaster, Tobin Bacon, Greg Woolman, Gail Barnhart and Deb Stockman.

- Jamie Perna, part-time middle school art teacher, was approved to serve as in a full-time high school art teacher until the return of the regular high school art teacher.

- Jacklynn Mercer was awarded a higher teacher pay scale.

- The board approved the supplemental contract resignations of Alainna Pyat, varsity and junior varsity fall sports cheerleading adviser, and John Bloor, varsity boys track coach. The board approved the contract for Jamiel Radman, junior varsity boys soccer coach; Darren Miller, Camp Fitch adviser; Dave Mackay, seventh grade boys basketball coach; Allison Lemaster, pep club adviser; Phylicia Joy, varsity and junior varsity fall sports cheerleading adviser; and Gregory Woolman, varsity boys track coach.

- The board also approved a long list of substitutes, which the Karen Sapp, who is responsible for calling substitutes asked for the numbers of immediately.

- The next meeting of the board, which will be held at 7 p.m. Oct. 10 will be held in the new performing arts center. It will be the first meeting in the new facility, which has better acoustics than the music suite and Dilling believes will be quieter because of the distance from that facility to the gyms.



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