GATESVILLE — The Gatesville school board Wednesday approved more than $1.5 million to spruce up the district’s football stadium and $142,174 to improve school building security.

Board President Dr. Stephen Norris and members Mary Anne Leib, Joe Nolte, Amy Hays, Deborah Ford and Gerald Poe voted for both projects. Board member Lisbeth Appelman was absent from the special session.

Texas Sports Builders of Burleson, low bidder on the stadium project, will begin work next week on new field turf, a new track and renovations to the bleachers.

The improved stadium should be ready for the Hornets’ football home opener Aug. 28.

The board trimmed $311,000 from the company’s original $1.87 million bid by reducing or eliminating features based on the design of the Huckabee architecture firm of Fort Worth.

Although voting in favor of the stadium, Poe expressed concern that the project did not include repairs to the restrooms.

“We are going to hear about not getting the restrooms fixed,” Poe said. “Three years ago, the restrooms were the No. 1 priority. Now they are nothing.”

Superintendent Stewart Speer said renovation of the stadium restrooms would be a “coming attraction” in the next budget.

Norris said the drop in the economy three years ago resulted in the restroom renovations being scuttled.

CWA Construction of Waco will handle the security improvements to school buildings, which will include vestibules, push-button entrances, new locking systems, video cameras and two-way speakers.

Contact Tim Orwig at

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