Buena Vista school district given extension to secure loan

The Buena Vista school district has until 5 p.m. Monday to secure a bank loan in order to open up for the next school year.

The state Treasury and the Michigan Department of Education will not lend the district any more money. Board members say they're grateful for the extension.

â??Weâ??re going to work together and let the other board members know what's going on and Iâ??m quite sure we can meet that deadline,â?? says Fredia Wicks, treasurer of the Buena Vista school board.

The last-minute extension comes after a public hearing on the recently passed school dissolution law. The law only applies to Buena Vista and Inkster.

â??For it to just dwindle down to two, that's just not fair,â?? says Rhonda Burton, secretary of the Buena Vista school board.

On Thursday, the state superintendent and treasurer determined the cash-strapped districts are no longer financially viable.

â??They can't access the state aide note program or any other borrowings from banks which means they don't have the cash to pay payroll and function as a school district,â?? says Andy Dillon, state treasurer.

That means a bank must finance the district for the next school year.

â??If they don't provide that by 5 o'clock, the hearing today stands and the decision today stands,â?? says state superintendent Dr. Mike Flanagan.

â??The deadline is Monday at 5 o'clock but we're going to continue to do what we can do.")

The school board has also voted to allow a charter school company to come in and take over the district but the state superintendent says that process usually takes a year and a half and Buena Vista simply doesn't have enough time.