Mt Pleasant News
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Wash Journal   Fairfield Ledger
Neighbors Growing Together | Sep 25, 2018

MP school board votes ‘no’ for proposed lease agreement for IW’s use of Mapleleaf

MPCSD going back to the drawing board
Sep 11, 2018

By Grace King, Mt. Pleasant News

 

The Mt. Pleasant School Board is going back to the drawing board to create a lease agreement for Iowa Wesleyan University’s use of Mapleleaf Athletic Center after the motion failed 4 to 3.

The board voted against the lease agreement, which would have allowed IW to continue using the Mapleleaf Athletic Complex, during a regular board meeting on Monday, Sept. 10.

The first motion to approve the lease agreement, made by Chuck Andrew, amended the lease agreement to require IW pay the MPCSD $15,000 for a one-year lease for the 2018-2019 school year.

Board President David McCoid asked what the repercussions would be if IW refused to pay? “I think that would be a terrible public relations mistake,” McCoid said as he voted no on Andrew’s motion.

“(IW) is a big part of our community … I think $15,000 is too much, in my personal opinion. I think $5,000 is too little,” board member Willy Amos said, adding that he does think there should be a lease agreement.

Middle School Principal Nate Lange implored the school board to think about the long-term benefits IW gives to the district and the Mt. Pleasant Community. “We are constantly asking their men and women to come into our schools to mentor and student teach, and to keep those relationships alive is a strong attribute for both schools,” he said.

The second motion, made by Jennifer Crull, was to approve the lease as is. Martha Wiley seconded with discussion, asking if the district could have IW’s usage expenses tracked over the next three years and include that in future lease agreements.

“It may be a lot more of an expense than we’re guessing,” Wiley said.

McCoid said the only way to track usage expenses would be to hire someone through Mt. Pleasant Utilities to read the meter before and after IW’s use of the facility or have a second meter installed that would be triggered when they use it.

The motion to approve the lease agreement as is failed 4 to 3, with Kevin Sandersfeld, Karl Braun, Andrew and Amos voting no and McCoid, Wiley and Crull voting yes.

No IW representative was present at the meeting.

After the meeting, MPCSD superintendent John Henriksen said it still is the district’s goal to get an agreement in place. Henriksen, with help from the MPCSD activities director, is planning on looking into how much it costs to run Mapleleaf for a year and how many practices and games the high school has on the field vs. how many practices and games IW has on the field.

Henriksen said they will look at the percentage of time the district is using Mapleleaf compared to the amount of time IW is using it to figure out what’s a fair lease amount.

“We will continue as we have operated with IW. We’re glad to share our facilities with them,” Henriksen said. “Wesleyan’s partnership with us and the district is incredibly important. We don’t want to do anything to damage that.”

 

*Correction was made. The original story reported that Chuck Andrew made a motion for a three-year contract with IW with $15,000 paid up front.

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