Lawmakers Make Rebuilding Enterprise Schools Top Priority

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Leaders in the Alabama House and Senate
have promised to make rebuilding two tornado ravaged schools in Enterprise a top priority of the 2007 regular session of the Legislature.

Bills were introduced today on the first day of the regular session to provide emergency funds to finance the rebuilding of Enterprise High School and Hillcrest Elementary School. Eight students were killed Thursday when a hallway ceiling collapsed at the high school The elementary school is next door and was partially gutted by the storm.

State Senator Jimmy Holley of Elba says an an architect has estimated it would cost about 59 million dollars to rebuild the high school and about 17 point six million dollars to replace the elementary school.

Holley says some of the cost of rebuilding the school will be paid by insurance and by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. But he says the state will need to pay the remainder of the cost.

The bills introduced in the House and Senate would provide a special appropriation to the state Board of Education to cover the cost of rebuilding the schools. Holley says the board would later repay the state any money received from insurance payments or FEMA.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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