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DALLAS -- "Lease it. Don't sell it," summed up an impassioned plea from long-time Rickreall property owner Paul Smull.
"If it is sold, it should take a vote of the people in that district," Smull told the Dallas School Board Oct. 25.
"Rickreall is unique. It's a community with a post office, fire hall, businesses, fairgrounds and a school older than any of them. It's a big part of the community."
Penny Cox, speaking as chair of the Rickreall Area Advisory Committee, said "one concern -- the property is zoned `public educational.' However, if Jubilee holds church services there, it needs a zone change. AR-5 zoning would open it to a lot of other activities including commercial."
Interim Superintendent David Voves responded to Smull and the others present, noting that the district has entered into a lease-purchase arrangement with Jesus Our Jubilee ministries.
That organization is using the building to house its school. Arrangements have been made to facilitate the Rickreall Christmas Pageant at the school.
Continuing efforts to assure access and parking for Rickreall Grange and Masonic Lodge are also underway. Changes resulting from the Highway 22 and Highway 99W interchange are forcing a new access road to the school to be built just east of those facilities.
Acting Board Chair Susan Humphrey and board member Kevin Crawford noted that district legal counsel Mark Irick had been involved throughout the sale process. The district has clear title to the property and the board is legally entitled to dispose of it in the best interests of the district.
Part of the agreement with Jubilee includes gaining a zone change to AR-5, Voves added.