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Educating each other about tax

As Bugg tells others about plan, he is learning important points

At the regular meeting of the Coal City Unit Dist. 1 school board Wednesday, Superintendent Kent Bugg updated members on two much-discussed issues.

The board had given Bugg permission to give presentations to local city councils regarding the proposed school facilities tax as part of an effort to “educate” stakeholders on the issue without “advocating” for it.

Bugg said he attended a meeting in Diamond, and that the village board had raised a lot of important points, both positive and negative, about the measure.

“I think it went well,” Bugg said. “I think they provided a lot of important feedback. It was very informative.”

The proposed school facilities tax would add 1 percent to the county sales tax, which proponents say would generate revenue for schools, while easing the burden on local taxpayers.

To get the measure on the next ballot in March, school boards representing more than 50 percent of students in the county would have to pass a resolution by the end of the year.

Bugg also addressed the lawsuit filed against Grundy County after it struck down a plan for a controversial RV campground in Goose Lake Township.

Bugg spoke against the plan on behalf of the district during a series of emotionally charged county meetings, arguing the campground could hurt an important industrial corridor for the school district.

Bugg said that while the district will continue to follow the suit closely, it does not plan to get involved in the litigation.

“We feel we’ve said what we needed to say,” Bugg said.

In other business, the board has made progress on a planned indoor-outdoor study area on the campus of Coal City High School.

The district received a $100,000 donation from the Gaddo family, and began looking into creating a garden-like study area.

Bugg said the district has gotten a quote on the project, and that it comes in within the $100,000 donation.

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