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Nitro plan centralizes fundraising for schools, youth groups

By Kristin Ledford

NITRO, W.Va. -- An ambitious plan to unify the fundraising efforts of Nitro area schools is in the planning stages. Nitro Mayor Dave Casebolt briefed the City Council on the plan at its meeting Tuesday night.

The Youth Development Program would unite the fundraising efforts for Nitro Elementary, Poca Elementary, Cross Lanes Elementary, Andrew Jackson Middle School, Poca Middle School, Nitro High School and Poca High School, in addition to area youth organizations.

The program would create a board that would establish a once-a-year solicitation of money from local businesses, the public and alumni.

The schools and youth organizations would then petition the board for necessary funding.

Casebolt said he met with the principals from several schools and area business owners, who showed overwhelming support for the plan.

"Nobody does this," Casebolt said. "So this is something that might be modeled for cities clear across the country."

Several council members expressed concern about whether the plan would work or not.

"If I understand this, there'll be one fundraiser to raise enough money to support every youth group all around us?" Councilwoman Brenda Tyler asked.

Casebolt said initial projections indicate that, during the first year, which could start as early as August 2014, the fundraiser would take in between $500,000 and $600,000.

A meeting with various booster organizations from the schools is scheduled for May 30 in council chambers. It will start at 6 p.m.

The council also voted to extend the season for the city pool. It initially was to close when Kanawha County Schools went back in session in August, but pool management realized they could keep the pool open for private parties during the week and to the public on weekends through Labor Day.

The pool opens for the season Saturday.


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