Board President Kari Hoffman pronounced the Colorado River Union High School District’s fieldhouse construction as on time and on budget during Monday’s governing board meeting in Bullhead City.
“We are on time. We are on budget,” Hoffman said. “We are not out of money. Rumors that have been going around town” are unfounded, she said.
Hoffman made that statement after the board greeted Gary Boren, hired to manage the Anderson Auto Group Fieldhouse, at his first board meeting since being named to the position last month. Boren, who comes to CRUHSD after serving as event operations manager for Texas Tech University’s Jones-AT&T Stadium and United Supermarkets Arena, and the City of Lubbock Civic Center, spoke briefly to the board.
He called the fieldhouse “the Tri-state’s most complete sport and entertainment facility” and said it would provide “great opportunities” to bring events to the area. He twice referred to it as the “Tri-state’s jewel” and noted that it is, first and foremost, a “tool for education” to be used by students of Mohave and River Valley High Schools.
Before introducing Boren to the board, Supt. Benje Hookstra said the project, funded by a
voter-approved bond issue in the 2016 election, was “coming along well.”
Hookstra said equipment for the kitchen and two concession stands has been secured. The kitchen will be used by the CRUHSD culinary arts programs. He also said the audio-video and sound systems had been secured. Those systems will be used for athletic programs and will be incorporated in the district’s career and technical education programs, Hookstra said.
The fieldhouse also was the topic of the meeting’s opening. Royanne Ortiz, who is running for one of the three board seats up for grabs in the November election, during the call to the public advocated for formation of a five-member citizens committee to oversee expenditures for the fieldhouse and other projects from the
$34 million bond. She also asked that fieldhouse revenue and operating expenses be recorded in separate accounts and urged the board to form another citizens committee to work with Boren to provide quarterly financial reports on the fieldhouse.
Because none of those suggestions were on Monday night’s agenda, the board did not comment on them.
In other action:
- The board heard Hookstra’s enrollment report that indicated that total enrollment for the district was up slightly compared to a year ago. The 40th-day enrollment this year for Mohave, River Valley and the CRUHSD Academy totaled 1,901; last year, the 40th-day count was 1,895. Hookstra said River Valley enrollment is down slightly from a year ago, Mohave is about the same and CRUHSD is up slightly.
- The board voted to approve girls wrestling for the Mohave campus in a season set to start later this month.
Wrestling coach Cory Burgess said more than 100 schools had expressed interest in starting what the Arizona Interscholastic Association called an “emerging sport.” In order to schedule competition, the AIA asked interested schools to make a decision prior to the start of the season Oct. 29; Monday’s meeting was the last scheduled for the CRUHSD board before that date.
Burgess said he expected 20 to 30 girls to try out for wrestling this year; he said he had three girls competing on the boys team last year with one competing at the varsity level.
Board Member Lori Crampton asked Burgess about the cost for a program that wasn’t budgeted for the current school year; he said that the boys wrestling team has been largely self-supporting, operating with the help of donations, fundraisers and proceeds from local tournaments. The initial season would include three tournaments; the costs, school officials indicated, likely could be supported.
- Hoffman noted the district — actually, programs at MHS — had received 18 separate donations totalling more than $7,000 in the last month. Among the larger contributions: $1,599.87 from Findlay Motor Company for boys basketball uniforms; $1,200 in supplies from Eva DelaTorre for the art department; $500 each from A&G Towing & Storage, Aquatic Pools & Landscape and Baron’s Security Services to the boys basketball program; and $500 worth of fabric from Walmart for the craft club.
- The board directed MHS Principal Steve Lawrence and RVHS Principal Dorn Wilcox to craft a joint cell phone policy for use on both campuses. The board held an hour-long workshop on student cell phone use and found that the two schools have slightly different policies in place. The board had hoped to approve a standard policy at Monday’s meeting but, since no standard policy existed, instead asked the principals to produce the new policy for consideration at the board’s Nov. 12 meeting.