(Editor’s note: This is the fourth article in an eight-part series about the Proposition KIDS bond issue in Seneca.)
Proposition Keep Improving Seneca Schools (KIDS) is a major item on the April 3 election ballot for residents of the Seneca School District.
The passage of this bond issue would include the construction of an athletic complex, performing arts improvements made to the old gym at the high school, a safe room at the agriculture building for AG students and staff members in the administration building, and the possibility of getting a FEMA building at the junior high school.
The bond issue would also result in a $0.15 tax increase to the residents of Seneca.
The athletic complex would be able to provide service for track and field, youth baseball, and the high school baseball and softball teams.
“There are 35 baseball players and 15 softball players and with this complex it is possible that the numbers of participants could go up,” said Dr. Jim Cummins, superintendent of schools.
“The complex would give the students something to depend on and be proud of.”
The current baseball fields that the high school plays on are the same ball fields the youth teams use next to the lagoon in Oklahoma.
The ball fields have flooded several times over the years and every time it does, the district talks about building a new complex.
“We hate asking people to donate money and volunteer to fix the ball fields every time it floods, and eventually the insurance company is going to get tired of paying out every time it floods,” said Cummins.
When the April 2017 flood hit Seneca, the insurance spent $45,000 to re-build it.
With the construction of new ball fields, said Cummins, the district would save money on re-building every time it floods and it would also prevent them from asking for volunteers to help repair it.
“The new athletic complex would be more dependable for our teams to host tournaments,” Cummins said.
Seneca hosts tournaments for the high school ball teams but has had to cancel in the past because the ball fields were destroyed.
The rough estimated cost for the softball, baseball, and youth ball fields would be between $1.2 and $1.4 million.
“Our kids deserve something nice to have, and we need to provide that to them,” said Cummins.