Do you support a bond election for a Rains High School Performing Arts Center?

Rains HIgh School Theatre students rehearse for a past production.

The Rains County Leader would like to know our readers thoughts and ideas regarding a possible bond election: Are you a registered voter? Do you own taxable property in the county? Would you support and vote in favor of or against a presented bond, and why? Would you vote in favor of a bond which included not only the building of an auditorium, but also the construction of a maintenance and transportation facility?

(An article featured on the front page of the January 16, 2018 edition of the Rains County Leader provides more details regarding the auditorium and the school board meeting during which the quotes were discussed)

The quote received for a 650-seat auditorium (27,960 sq. ft. of gross area), which included band and choir areas, was $7.732936M. He explained that without the band hall and choir area, the cost was dropped by $1.8M to an approximate cost between $5.8-5.9M. Rouse said that if the concession stand (150 sq. ft.) was taken off the plans, the price would drop by about $37,000. The quote for a 300-seat auditorium was $6.7M and for a 150-seat auditorium was $6.4M.  ***All quotes are subject to change (either increase or decrease) by the time the school would break ground.

At current prices, a maintenance and transportation facility would cost between $1.75-2M and would present require a bond of approximately $10M.

At current quoted prices, property taxes could be increased by approximately $0.12 per $100 valuation.

Comments could be featured in an upcoming article to be published in the newspaper.

19 Comments on "Do you support a bond election for a Rains High School Performing Arts Center?"

  1. I am so pleased that this is being discussed. We really need a facility that is up to UIL standard.

  2. Lauren Withrow | January 17, 2018 at 11:11 am | Reply

    Submitted by John Sanches:

    As a taxpayer I expect my dollars to go toward giving a great education. I feel we spend way too much on extracurricular activities and not enough on teachers and academics my saying is Johnny can’t read or write but look how good he plays ball or plays an instrument . Rains County has estimated total population of 11,000 which would amount to $702 per person for something which is not necessary. What will we do when we need upgrades for our schools?

  3. Lauren Withrow | January 17, 2018 at 11:12 am | Reply

    Submitted by Jeannie Prendergast:
    The City of Emory should build a performing arts center which would benefit the whole community and surrounding areas. Many small East Texas towns that have performing arts centers find them to most beneficial to their growth and prosperity.

  4. Lauren Withrow | January 17, 2018 at 11:13 am | Reply

    Submitted by Vanessa Wells:

    I am one of the parents who have spoken at the meetings, so I am of course in favor of the performing arts center. The current stage is half the regulation size for UIL, which limits the kids when it comes to competing where they can get attention in the form of scholarships. It is also open, with no way to block out the noise from the gym, which is in nearly constant use…and as parents we have to be pleased about that. We want the kids to get the maximum benefit from the facilities. But the size of the current stage isn’t the only problem. Seating, acoustics, and the proximity to the gym are issues that we cannot fix with remodeling. A separate performing arts center would settle the issue in a way that will solve the problem permanently.

  5. The kids are so deserving of this! I will gladly sign, so will my brother, sister in law, mom, and dad and many other family members. This facility can’t come soon enough!

  6. No, it should have been included during the last construction…

  7. Ronnie D Willis | January 17, 2018 at 6:51 pm | Reply

    That’s just what we need higher taxes! Kids have told me they don’t have enough computers to go around , an ag shop that looks like it was made in the 60’s.Visited Hopkins county noticed a first class welding shop, an small engine shop and a body shop in one corner of the campus. I’ve lived here all my life and can count on one hand how many pro football players and actors we’ve produced.I am strongly against it

  8. I support this and think it has been needed for a long time. I am a tax payer and a registered voter. Prices will continue to soar, so let’s do it now. Extracurricular activities are a life line for many kids. These activities provide them with opportunities for scholarships and growth. We have wonderful sports facilities, let’s spend some on the performing arts, and get the benefit of extending the use of our current facilities. Let’s build a facility with areas for the choir and band hall.

  9. More students would use this type of facility than both the football & baseball facilities together. I’m in favor! There would be an opportunity for use during graduation as well as give the district another venue for UIL events.

  10. Jeannine Hayes | January 31, 2018 at 2:16 pm | Reply

    Yes Yes and Yes! Have needed it for decades!We finally have a group that can present it with facts. Hopefully the School Board will take the initiative and do this for our community. ALL the student body and ALL the campuses will benefit. AND the County. I think it is worth the money and highly favored.

  11. I am a Rains County Resident and graduate of Rains ISD. I am also a parent of two amazing boys who are also in the band like I was. I have a unique experience with all of this. In high school i got first chair in the entire state for Alto Saxophones. Because of my talent I have been able to play in numerous performance areas. When I was in high school we played in the high school gym. Yes it has awesome acoustics but it gets very hot and the music gets effected when the air conditioners kick on. Also the seating for parents and other folks are horrible. I figured when the new high school was built they would have finally given the band, theater, and art folks a place to show off for the community.

    Sadly I discovered a couple years ago at my sons first concert that there was not a performance area for the band or others. This community is now home to a 4A school district. Other 4A school districts have stages for their arts programs. We need this so that we can compete with other school districts. I’ve played in many types of auditoriums from Texas A&M – Commerce, to the Meyerson in Dallas, to all the way up in NY City playing at Carnegie Hall. Getting to play in a nice auditorium makes a person feel great. You’re performing for your parents and friends and other family and when you’re done you feel like a professional.

    But there are educational reasons that would happen if this was built. Rains could start teaching kids how to do audio setup for recording of band performances and then sell those recordings to help bring more funds to the school. The school could also setup a video program and teach kids how to film plays as well as other band programs. Our school could start hosting All Region band performances and other parents and teachers would come to our school and see the greatness in Rains ISD. If we have strong Arts programs parents may then move to our area which then brings in more tax revenue for the county.

    I know sports are king in the entire state, but music is huge in this state. I know most the parents who are for this are pushing this for the theater department, but we should do this for the music department. State of Texas is considered one of if not the best place to learn an instrument and play in a band. Not many have lived outside of this state, but many schools outside of Texas don’t promote music and even cut the band program. We have a very unique state when it comes to our band programs. If we want to help bring in more people to our county we need to have the same things that other 4A schools have and that’s a nice sized performance center.

    Our school district is an amazing school district. We are missing one thing though and that’s a performance hall. I hope we all can make it happen.

  12. Anybody really looked at the condition of the jr high condition and the driveway??? I’ve seen smoother pastures…spend your money on repairs,, your ag shop and program looks like junk pure junk! We’ve already had enough tax increases …improve what you have !!

  13. You are asking the wrong question — the article ignored the “elephant in the room” which is WHY the Permanent Fund (the account used to build the new football stadium and the new baseball/softball fields – rather than asking the tax payers to pass a bond) is not being used for the Performing Arts building. Until this question is asked and answered, you cannot ask the question as to whether we support the bond or support Performing Arts.

  14. And one more thing….if we are going to pass a bond to pay for a performing arts building, why not make it a public building (which everyone can use…including the High School) instead of a school building, which only a few can use?

    • Rumor has it that this might be in a seperate location….anyone think about security??? Our campus is already spread across a large area…you might want to find out how big our campus security force is

  15. It would be nice to have a performing arts center. It would be nice to have lots of things. That said, how can we seriously be concentrating on extracurricular activities when the education of our children is sub par? Are the people of this county even aware that our Junior High and the High School are both listed as below average with the state? Our district is in serious need of a little swamp draining, and that includes from the top down.

    http://school-ratings.com/Texas/cities/Emory.html

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