SEVERE WX : Severe Thunderstorm Warning View Alerts

West Lafayette Community School Corporation suing State of Indiana

WLCSC is suing the state of Indiana over a 2011 law. The law states that a charter school can take unused public school property and lease it for just one dollar.

Posted: Sep 13, 2019 7:07 PM
Updated: Sep 13, 2019 7:15 PM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - West Lafayette Community School Corporation is suing the State of Indiana. Superintendent Dr. Rocky Killion said a law established in 2011 is threatening the future of the old Happy Hollow Elementary School and local taxpayers' rights.

"The school board and I are challenging the constitutionality that allows a private corporation to open up a charter school, to come in and take a community asset like, Happy Hollow Elementary School, and lease it for a dollar or lease it at the lowest cost without any due process from the taxpayers," said Dr. Killion. 

Currently, the City of West Lafayette is renting the old school temporarily, as the Morton Center is under construction.

"The legislation, in my opinion, is in appropriate, it's unconstitutional, it bypasses the local taxpayers," he said. "Local taxpayers should have the input as to what we do with local assets, not Indianapolis."

Dr. Killion said when you sue the state, by law, you have to sue the governor as well. Governor Eric Holcomb is listed as the defendant in the case.

This lawsuit was filed on Thursday. News 18 talked with a representative from Governor Holcomb's office. They said they haven't even received the lawsuit in person yet. Therefore, they are not ready to make any kind of comment at this time.

"It's nothing personal," said Dr. Killion about suing the governor.

State Representative Chris Campbell said this law brings up other causes for concern.

"The school corporation not only has to give up that asset, but they are also left with any debt that's on the building," she said.

Dr. Killion said they are not alone. Other school districts are interested in joining in on this lawsuit. Representative Campbell is an advocate for public schools support over private charter or voucher schools. She said she is happy by this move.

"Schools have stepped up and said that this is unacceptable," she said. "It's unfortunate that we have to fight our own state to say that the law they have passed is unconstitutional, but it isn't fair to the taxpayers."

Dr. Killion says they have not had any charter schools approach them about leasing the school, but that he wants to be proactive. He explained that they do have future plans for old Happy Hollow Elementary.

"We're very interested in a kindergarten center, early childhood center," he said. "But it takes time to do those things."

Time that laws like this one threaten. Now, WLCSC has to wait to see how it's litigated at the Superior Court level. Dr. Killion said the lawsuit is being paid for by a legal fund that the school corporation has.

"I hope our community will support us in this and realize that we are trying to protect a great community asset that they paid for," he said.

West Lafayette
Clear
75° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 75°
Kokomo
Overcast
73° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 73°
Rensselaer
Broken Clouds
73° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 73°
Fowler
Broken Clouds
73° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 73°
Williamsport
Broken Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 72°
Crawfordsville
Broken Clouds
73° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 73°
Frankfort
Scattered Clouds
68° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 68°
Delphi
Clear
71° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 71°
Monticello
Clear
71° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 71°
Logansport
Overcast
70° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 70°
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 50300

Reported Deaths: 2748
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11920692
Lake5432248
Elkhart347058
Allen2902133
St. Joseph205169
Hamilton1665101
Cass16449
Hendricks1446100
Johnson1325118
Porter80238
Tippecanoe7599
Clark68144
Vanderburgh6816
Madison67264
LaPorte60527
Howard59458
Bartholomew59345
Kosciusko5704
Marshall5308
Noble50128
LaGrange4829
Jackson4783
Boone47444
Delaware46952
Hancock46036
Shelby43525
Floyd40444
Morgan33631
Monroe32928
Grant30926
Dubois2976
Henry29717
Montgomery29720
Clinton2893
White26810
Decatur25532
Dearborn25423
Lawrence25225
Vigo2478
Warrick24329
Harrison21722
Greene19332
Miami1922
Jennings17912
Putnam1728
DeKalb1674
Scott1639
Wayne1536
Daviess15017
Perry1459
Orange13723
Steuben1362
Jasper1332
Franklin1278
Ripley1277
Wabash1152
Carroll1132
Gibson1132
Fayette1057
Whitley1045
Newton10010
Starke983
Huntington932
Randolph794
Wells791
Jefferson782
Fulton731
Jay680
Washington681
Knox670
Clay665
Pulaski661
Rush613
Posey550
Owen521
Benton510
Spencer501
Adams491
Sullivan471
Brown431
Blackford402
Fountain352
Crawford330
Tipton321
Switzerland300
Martin240
Parke230
Ohio220
Vermillion200
Warren151
Union130
Pike110
Unassigned0193

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events