Bank bosses, attorneys, former school and college heads — these guys will decide who gets what when the Jordan School District officially splits in 2009.

Both east and west sides of the district have created transition teams, which by law must divide what's owned and what's owed within Utah's largest school district.

The west-side team, announced Tuesday by the Jordan Board of Education, will be led by Ralph Haws, a former president of the Jordan Board of Education and a retired labor relations specialist and school boss.

Other members are: South Jordan city administrator Rick Horst; Don Wallace, president, COO and general counsel of the Sorenson Group-Real Estate Division; Continental Bank vice-chairman, director and CFO Dennis Higbee; and Mountain America Credit Union executive vice president and CAO Sterling Nielsen.

Alternates are school board member Peggy Jo Kennett and West Jordan City Councilwoman Melissa Johnson.

The east-side team, firmed up last week, is: Jason Burningham, a principal in Lewis Young Robertson & Burningham Inc., which performed the feasibility study on the new district creation; Bob Day, retired facilities manager for Jordan District; former Sandy mayor and lawyer Steve Newton; former Jordan District business administrator Devon Sanderson; and former Draper budget officer and city councilman Lamont Smith.

Alternates are: David Doty, Utah System of Higher Education assistant commissioner and director of policy studies; former College of Eastern Utah president and current Utah Education Network director Michael Peterson; and asset evaluation specialist Mike Shelton, founder, president and CEO of Golden Gate Ventures.

The east-side team will meet Friday, Cottonwood Heights Mayor Kelvyn Cullimore Jr. said. The west-side team met Tuesday.

Jordan is the first Utah school district to split.

District officials by Jan. 4 will give the teams a list of assets and liabilities, which by law must be divided by July 1.

"It's a straightforward process; we're not looking at programs; we're looking at assets, the liabilities, the bonded indebtedness," Haws said. "It is what it is."

Both sides believe the work will be amicable, and include meetings alone and together.

"We intentionally, and I think the other team as well intentionally, looked for people who would be non-adversarial," Cullimore said. "Our hope is in the long run, everybody's looking at (assets) on a global basis; these are assets currently owned by every taxpayer in Jordan School District — not, 'This is ours, that is theirs."'

Meanwhile, Herriman City's lawsuit challenging the district split vote — west-siders had no say — is scheduled for a Feb. 29 hearing in U.S. District Court in Salt Lake City, attorney Blake Ostler said.

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