Dallas County Schools Sells Headquarters, Raises Cash

Bond rating agency Moody's Investors Service downgraded DCS's debt to its lowest possible score

The dissolution committee appointed to close troubled bus agency Dallas County Schools sold the headquarters building Monday and took other steps to raise cash.

The Dallas Independent School District purchased the training and technology building at 5151 Samuell Blvd. for $6.1 million after two appraisals set that price as market value. DCS spent $7.1 million since 2010 to purchase and renovate the building. The sale price Monday did not include furniture and fixtures.

"They're working on a deal for that, and we're also looking at getting bids from our other component districts," said DCS Chief Operating Officer Alan King.

King was hired to wind down DCS and distribute assets to the school districts it serves.

Dallas ISD will receive 962 buses. It has posted 1,100 positions for a new transportation department to be run from the current DCS building. DCS currently operates 850 routes for Dallas ISD.

Voters approved closing DCS after more than a year of NBC 5 Investigates reports on past management and safety problems. An FBI investigation is underway.

The state law setting up closure gave Dallas ISD the opportunity to buy the building, which has classrooms and a theater to seat 90 people for bus driver training.

"This building is ideal and was actually built to accommodate the bus drivers, so we'll be able to continue with the program Dallas County had by being able to utilize this building," said Dallas ISD Deputy Superintendent Scott Layne.

DCS also sold squad cars to Dallas ISD on Monday.

Bond rating agency Moody's Investors Service downgraded DCS's debt to its lowest possible score on Friday with warnings that the agency is dissolving.

"That's accurate. People need to be aware of that," King said. "But we have the money. We're going to finish the year strong, and we're working on a plan of how we're going to repay the debt."

DCS has about $100 million in outstanding debt but can continue to levy a property tax until it is paid off, even though the agency will no longer provide bus service.

Dallas ISD and other districts served by DCS will provide other transportation starting in fall 2018. DCS will provide summer school bus service for Dallas ISD.

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