March 6 2014 12:00 AM

Lansing School Board pauses discussion on leasing space for police operations, waiting for final lease agreement

LPD\'s North Precinct on May Street. City Pulse file photo.

Thursday, March 6 — The Lansing School Board will not discuss leasing 152,000 square feet at the Hill Center to the Lansing Police Department as was scheduled for its meeting tonight. Board President Peter Spadafore said the board is waiting for a final lease agreement to discuss the proposal further.

Two weeks ago, Lansing Chief Operating Officer Chad Gamble and Police Chief Mike Yankowski presented a plan to the school board that would move investigative and patrol divisions out of the North Precinct by Aug. 31 seven miles south to the Hill Center on Wise Road. The city has said it would spend more than $1 million in building upgrades.

The move raises questions about why the city wants to spend more money on leased space, as well as move police operations from a central point of the city. A city-owned, permanent home in a centralized location has for years been a stated goal of the administration and the City Council.

Spadafore said lawyers for both the city and the school district are still working out a final lease agreement.

“We have a general idea from what we head last time about what will be reflected in the lease, but I have no idea about a final proposal,” he said.

Spadafore hopes it will be ready for next week’s agenda to discuss publicly. The plan is to vote on it at the first meeting after that if it’s supported, he added.