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      ARC first on AISD's board meeting agenda

      It's getting closer to November 5, 2013 and voters in Amarillo will decide the fate of that multi-million-dollar recreation center.

      The Amarillo Independent School District (AISD) had its board meeting tonight and the Amarillo Recreation Center (ARC) was the first item on the agenda. Chief Financial Officer at AISD, Les Hoyt gave specific reasons the district and its students would benefit from the sports complex.

      "Currently we're using the Amarillo Town Club for our swim meets and to practice in, which we're grateful for that they provide that for us." he said. "But it's not a proper facility for competition swimming. It limits the number of participation we can have in the swim teams."

      The plan is to build the ARC as an extension to the Rick Klein Sports Complex in southeast Amarillo. To accomplish this, taxpayers would face a $25 tax increase on a $100,000 property, and some groups are not happy about it.

      A Facebook page called Amarillo Recreation Complex - Vote No To Higher Taxes was specifically created in opposition to the sports complex. The group posted today saying, "The AISD board oversees a school district, and not a taxpayer supported bond. We do question why the AISD board would discuss the amarillo recreation complex. In their capacity as board members they too have rules to follow when promoting taxpayer funded projects."

      However, that didn't stop board member Jim Austin from speaking up.

      "I think it's great for the city, and great for the school district, and great for the parents, and great for the kids." he said. "So I applaud the ARC committee and the work they've done, the work the city has done with them to go hand-in-hand and we look forward to being a participant."

      None of the board members would go on camera to specifically talk about ARC due to ethics committee rules.