According to The Knoxville News Sentinel, the Roane County Schools' plan was on the drawing board, but unfunded when an ash lagoon breached at the Kingston Fossil Plant in December 2008. The schools got most of a $43 million payout to the county by the Tennessee Valley Authority.
The money funded construction of a new elementary school, expansion and renovation of existing schools and the closing of two others.
TVA is still cleaning up after 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash burst from the rupture. The restoration is expected to cost more than $1 billion.
The government-owned utility supplies electricity in seven states.