WRBM proposes to service school district’s sports

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RANGELY I The Western Rio Blanco Metropolitan Recreation and Parks District (WRBM) has proposed entering into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Rangely School District, where the WRBM would expand its services to take over primary fiscal responsibility for all of the school district’s athletics and extracurricular activities.
WRBM director Tim Webber first initiated the conversation as a concerned parent, in the spring of 2010 and has since researched the idea and has gained support of his board of directors.
It currently costs the school district $300,000 to operate the district’s sports and extracurricular activities. Webber’s proposal would ask voters to increase the WRBM district’s mill levy by 1.1 mills to generate the $300,000.
“I’m not a big fan of creating taxes but this is about the kids and giving them the best education we can,” Webber said. “We need to do this, the school district is looking at more cuts next year.”
If an intergovernmental agreement is reached between the two districts, the WRBM would sponsor a ballot question to taxpayers, in its name, to approve the mill levy. If the mill levy is passed by voters, the school district would be responsible for any overages (above the $300,000) and any savings would be put into a reserve fund.
The school district would continue with its current responsibilities as a member of the Colorado High School Activities Association, hire/fire coaches, responsible for schedules and all game officials and personnel to assist with home games.
The school district would provide the WRBM with an annual budget and request quarterly draws to cover expenses.
The MOU would free up $300,000 for the school district, which could be used for academic and instructional purposes, resulting in what Webber believes would be a better education for kids.
Webber presented the Rangely board of education with a feasibility analysis, letters from both the district’s attorneys, budgets, mill levy projections and a draft MOU. The two districts will hold a work session Feb. 14.
Board members of the WRBM are: Linda Gordon, Joyce Key, Janet Mackay, George Fortunado and Dennis Median. School board members are: Adair Norman, Matt Scoggins, Lisa Piering, Donna Petersburg and Rebecca Rector.