NMB high school renovations $10 million more than original budget

The budget for renovations to North Myrtle Beach High School doubled from about $10 million to $21 million.

North Myrtle Beach High School is one of ten buildings within the district’s short term capital plan.

School officials say the high school was built in the 70s and was on the top of the list for work.

They say the original $10 million budgeted for the project would not have even scratched the surface of the needs.

“We would have walked away and the school would have looked like it had not even changed,” said Horry County School Board District 1 member, Holly Heniford.

Because the building is so old, it needed a lot of renovations to maintain current building code regulations.

“You have to bring it up to current standards, so when you touch one piece then sometimes another system has to be upgraded. So we have to bring up to the full current code,” said Facilities Director, Mark Wolfe.

Things like fire systems are what brought the price tag up.

News 13 asked why weren’t these things known beforehand and originally budgeted.

Heniford says the $10 million budget was probably based on how much money was available at the time, but when the district realized how much work was needed they decided to make the investment.

“We don’t’ need to band aid these schools, we don’t need to duct tape them. We need to fix them,” she said.

So why not just build a new school?

The district is building several middle schools at a cost of about $35 million dollars.

Heniford says high schools are different.

The amenities needed for a high school far outweigh a middle school, and so does the cost.

Heniford says it’s at least $60 million for a new high school.

She says the renovations the district is doing should give North Myrtle Beach at least another 20-25 years

“Basically giving North Myrtle Beach a brand new school without building it,” said Heniford.

The North Myrtle Beach renovations are a part of the district’s multiyear short term capital plan, which in total costs more than $460 million dollars.

The district has the money available through budgeting and the use of bonds

Board officials have said in the past there will be no tax increase using these bonds.

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