Stick a fork in the new school district transition team. It's done.

Today the east-side mayors will be discussing what the next steps are after the Jordan-east transition team's report Monday that negotiations had failed.

Under the law that next step is arbitration — something both transition teams have said for months they wanted to avoid.

The teams were charged with crafting a proposal to divide the district's assets and liabilities since east-siders voted to secede from Jordan School District last year.

But the two teams have batted different proposals around throughout the last few months, unable to settle on an agreement. Recently both sides have retained legal counsel in order to prepare for impending arbitration.

The main issue is how to divide the district's assets, and a negotiating team made up of two members of each team drafted a proposal earlier this spring. The Jordan-west team rejected it, so the negotiating team went back to the drawing board, producing another proposal that was signed off on by Jordan-east.

But the Jordan-west team responded with a counter-proposal that led to the impasse.

The east side wants all of the district's buildings to be appraised and the monetary value of all of the buildings divided equally between both sides. That approach would likely result in the west side paying the east side money to even the score.

The west-side transition team wants to take a different approach, splitting the value of the common buildings currently used by both sides of the district and dividing the value according to the percentage of students each side has. That could be about 60/40, as the west side has more students.

Meanwhile, several west-side leaders, lawmakers and mayors in Jordan School District want to settle on a plan of action — perhaps seeking a special legislative session to delay the district split three to five years since the teams can't reach a consensus.


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