Guilford County, NC -- Guilford County Commissioners voted seven to four to approve the purchase of up to 125 acres of land for Guilford County Schools.
The school district hopes to build an Airport Area High School on the land abutting South Bunker Hill Road in Deep River Township near Kernersville. The land will be purchased from local bond money currently authorized and appropriated in conjunction with the Airport Area High School project ordinance. The district says it would cost $9.9 million, which is 50% more than was was approved in the original bond.
Construction of the school has been delayed in accordance with discussions between the Commissioners and the Board of Education regarding debt payment.
But even with Thursday night's vote, it may not be a done deal. The Town of Kernersville said the property isn't appropriate for a school, and is in an industrial area, making it better suited for a business. They believe a business could bring an $85 million tax base to Guilford County and the Town of Kernersville.
So far that fact has not stopped Guilford County School Board members.
And one legal option could give them what they want.
The developer could request Kernersville to de-annex the land.
Kernersville Mayor Dawn Morgan is aware of that option.
"The developer asked us back in May if we would support a de-annexation, and the board opposed a de-annexation at that time," explained Morgan. She said they would oppose it again.
Ed Price, School Board member over District 2 that includes the Airport Area School, said de-annexation is not a route they want to go.
"That wouldn't work to anybody's benefit. It's going to have to be Kernersville and Guilford County working together with no strong arming. No, that's not the way we want to go into it," said Price.
Guilford County School Board members will pick up the discussion of the Airport Area High School and this piece of property at next Tuesday's school board meeting.
The school district says it looked at 70 pieces of land but won't give us that list because of confidentiality issues.
WFMY News 2