by Max Brantley
Courtesy of the Fayetteville Trucker, we have a copy of a letter from state Sen. Sue Madison of Fayetteville to the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees concerning the proposal to sell the existing Fayetteville High School to UA for $59 million.
In short: Bad idea for any number of reasons.
LETTER FROM SEN. SUE MADISON
Dear Uof A Board Members
You are being asked to consider purchasing theFayetteville High School property for $59,000,000. Throughout State government budgets are being cut and vacant positions go unfilled. This is the time to exercise great restraint in expending public resources and making large commitments of future funds.
The University of Arkansas has undertaken many construction projects during the past eleven years and our bonded debt has
increased dramatically. Several properties have been purchased, and many new non-classroom buildings have been constructed. Yet, tuition is raised every year and faculty and staff salaries remain depressed.
The Fayetteville High School property is not adjacent to the teaching or research areas of the campus, and the announced
purchase price is only a fraction of the cost. The buildings are not suitable for immediate use and will need considerable
retro-fitting at additional expense. Debt service and maintenance of the property will preclude addressing more pressing and central educational needs for many years tocome.
Please consider the burden this property will be on our students, the campus, and Arkansas tax payers. We do not need this property, and I ask that you decline the offer to purchase it.
Sen. Sue Madison