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Council Update: New High Schools Study Pending

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Warwick City Councilman Steve McAllister. McAllister provides a Warwick City Council Update twice a month, following each Warwick City Council meeting.

Editor’s note: The following column is a twice-monthly update on Council meetings and developments from Warwick City Council President Steve McAllister. The column is written after each council meeting, twice a month.

I wanted to provide you an update on the two new high schools the voters approved building back in November.  I am working with the Mayor, and we have agreed we will have an independent study done to review the updated costs associated with building these schools.

As you are aware the voters approved a bond of up to $350 million to build both schools. The school department has been working hard with their team on their plans to build these schools.  We will hire a company to review those plans as they relate to today’s market conditions.  A number of factors have changed since November, such as higher interest rates, banking concerns and continued inflation.  I believe in the best interest of all Warwick taxpayers, we should have an updated review of the proposed plans with today’s economic conditions factored in.

The administration will start the process of hiring a company this week.  I will keep you posted as we move forward.  We will make any report we obtain public.

I will also be asking the city council to support a resolution to the General Assembly requesting an extension to the RIDE reimbursement deadlines on when these school projects need to start and the deadline they need to be completed.  The Mayor and I had a meeting with Speaker Shekarchi last week where we discussed a number of city issues including the new high schools.  Additional time and flexibility on when construction needs to begin could benefit the city.  The first step to getting any extension from the general assembly would be a council resolution.

I will keep everyone updated as we move forward on this generational project. We all need to do our homework when building these schools.  I appreciate all the work the school department, school committee, council and administration have done.  We all need to work together and gather as much information as possible to make sure these schools can be built for the amount the voters approved.

Announcements:

  1. Next council meeting is Monday, April 3rd
  2. Warwick’s own Don Rodrigues Karate Academy is hosting the Grand National Karate Tournament at the Crowne Plaza March 31 to April 2nd.  Hundreds of people will be attending to watch competitors from across the US and over 10 different countries.

Have a great week!

Steve McAllister
Author: Steve McAllister

Stephen McAllister, representing Ward 7 since 2017, was named Warwick City Council President in 2021.

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