By Marga Lincoln, Excerpt from the Helena Independent Record
East Helena Public Schools officials signed a deal Wednesday to take ownership of 50 acres of Dartman Field, according to school district superintendent Ron Whitmoyer.
“The final cost to the district is $90,931,” he said.
“This is a banner day for the taxpayers of East Helena — to have this property as a place to expand the school district as it continues to grow,” he said, “and hopefully serves the school district the next 50 years.”
Current school district enrollment is around 1,200 students, and the district could reach its enrollment capacity of 1,300 in the next three years.
The district has worked on acquiring the Dartman property, located just north of Radley School on Valley Drive, for close to six years.
The 50 acres, which will need remediation for arsenic contamination from the old East Helena lead smelter, is a donation from the Montana Environmental Trust Group.
METG has owned the field and controls assets from a settlement with Asarco, which at one time operated the smelter.