Morgan County Schools
Bylaws & Policies
 

7240 - SITE ACQUISITION

It is the policy of the Board of Education that real property acquisition price be based upon fair market value, taking into account any enhanced value of residual property owned by the seller.

The Boards shall seek school facility sites that comply with WVBE Policy 6200. The Board shall designate the Superintendent to conduct initial site acquisition negotiations. Negotiations for site acquisition shall be conducted as much as possible within the following guidelines:

 A.Real property shall be appraised before the initiation of negotiations, and the owner or the owner's designated representative shall be given an opportunity to accompany the appraiser during an inspection of the property except that the Board may with the owner's permission, eliminate the appraisal in cases involving acquisition by donation. The agency shall provide the owner with a copy of the Board's approved appraisal prior to initiation of negotiations for acquisition of the property. The term "appraisal" means a written statement independently and impartially prepared by a qualified appraiser setting forth an opinion of defined valued of an adequately described property as of a specific date, supported by the presentation and analysis of relevant market information.

 B.Before the initiation of negotiations for real property, an amount shall be established which it is reasonably believed is just compensation therefor, and such amount shall, subject to Board approval, be offered for the property. In no event shall such amount be less than the approved appraisal of the fair market value of real property. Any decrease or increase of the fair market value of real property prior to the date of valuation caused by school or other facility construction for which such property is acquired or by the likelihood that the property would be acquired for such school or other facility construction, other than that due to physical deterioration within the reasonable control of the owner, will be disregarded in determining the compensation for the property. The owner of the real property to be acquired shall be provided with a written statement of, and summary of the basis for, the amount established as just compensation. Where appropriate, the just compensation for the real property acquired and for damages to remaining real property shall be separately stated.

 C.If an interest in real property is to be acquired by exercise of power of eminent domain, formal condemnation proceedings shall be instituted.

 D.The Board shall perform due diligence by requiring a Phase I Environmental Site assessment, a Phase I Archeological survey, and a soils investigation for the purpose of assessing unforeseen site development costs. It is recommended that such due diligence be identified in any real estate sales contract or option to purchase real estate agreement.

Discussion of possible school sites may be carried on in an executive session of the Board, but all official actions must be taken in an open, public meeting. Official Board action is required to execute a valid real estate sales contract, execute a valid option to purchase real estate agreement or to initiate eminent domain proceedings, and a record of that action must be a part of the minutes of the Board.