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Charter school plans to sell bonds for building soon

Last Modified: Friday, October 25, 2013 1:16 PM

By Justin B. Phillips / American Press

With each passing day, the Southwest Louisiana Charter Academy board is getting closer to breaking ground for its new $11.5 million facility. The process is still in the early stages, with the Louisiana Public Facilities Authority authorizing the sale of up to $20 million in bonds last month.

The funds generated from the sale of the bonds will be used to buy land and finance the construction of the new building.

Right now, the Southwest Louisiana Charter Academy board is in the early steps of putting out to bid the bonds for the project. In September, the planned pace for which the bonds would be bid out was only slightly ahead of the current timetable. Gene Thibodeaux, academy board president, said the project is progressing as well as can be expected.

“The bond documents will be printed over the next 10 days and put on the open market in the second or third week of November,” he said. “We don’t anticipate any difficulties in selling the bonds.”

For the construction, the project is also in the early stages when it comes to awarding the project to a specific bidder.

“Right now, we have a pre-bid opening on Oct. 31. All of the interested bidders will submit proposals to the architectural firm and the board,” Thibodeaux said.

The initial numbers for the project are expansive. The general numbers for the construction work include the creation of 300 construction jobs and 20 permanent jobs on top of the 60 jobs associated with the project.

Thibodeaux said that, barring any hiccups, students will soon start to see their new facility take shape.

“Ninety-five percent of all of the preliminary steps have been finalized. We haven’t had any impediments in the process so far,” Thibodeaux said. “It’s just been the normal delays when it comes to selling the bonds. We’re still on target for the second or third week of November.”

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