Council breaks even on Slade
A $4 MILLION (plus GST) price tag almost saw the Southern Downs Regional Council (SDRC) dodge a loss on the sale of Slade campus, with the official handover finalised yesterday.
SDRC announced the handover of the campus to Christian Community Ministries (CCM) - owners of Warwick Christian College - yesterday afternoon.
The property was purchased in 2007 from Church of England Grammar School for $3.65 million plus GST.
Southern Downs Mayor Ron Bellingham said the council's intention was always to preserve the site as an educational or community asset and prevent residential development.
"I am pleased that this historical school site will once again be used for educational purposes," Cr Bellingham said.
While the sale price may have appeared like a tidy profit, the loss on staff and maintenance costs totalled $354,000 put them at about square.
The council did not take out a loan on the property and therefore did not pay interest but lost out on opportunity cost which could have seen interest earned if that money was invested.
By the Daily News' calculations, $4 million at a five per cent term deposit would equal $200,000 for four years, totalling $800,000 in interest which could have been earned.
Warwick Christian College principal Terrence McCorkell said they were working on plans to begin refurbishment work on a number of buildings.
"We need to ensure everything is ready as soon as we have the go-ahead from the State Government to make the move," he said.
He said they planned to extend to secondary schooling at the beginning of next year.
Mr McCorkell said the community use of the site and the operation of the school could be managed together after concerns were raised over the fate of groups which hired out rooms.
"Blue card requirements won't hinder us being able to make sections of the campus available to the community," he said.
CEO of CCM, John Lyndon, confirmed the site would be available for community use.
"People wishing to use the site simply need to contact the site supervisor to make bookings," he said.
"The SDRC's aspirations for the site to be used for its highest purpose and also for community have now been realised."
Contact information to hire sections of the school can be obtained by visiting sladecampus.com.