Sergeant Bluff-Luton School District holds informational meetings on $45-million bond vote
Residents in the Sergeant Bluff-Luton School District will vote on September 8th whether to approve, or deny, a $45 million dollar bond vote. The majority of the money would be used to build a new high school.
SERGEANT BLUFF, Iowa (KTIV) -
Much of the money will build a new high school. It's needed because school district officials say enrollment has grown by about two-percent a year. That's roughly 30 students. But, those won't be the only changes if the levy passes.
At a meeting, Wednesday night, school officials explained that they would move middle school students into the existing high school. In essence, that moves three grades into a four-grade school so that wouldn't require extra expansion there. Grades three through five would stay at the current school, with renovations, and primary students would move into the middle school, also needing renovations.
The money would come from an increase in property taxes. For a home valued at $200,000, it'd be a roughly $25 increase per month. Not everyone is on board with the idea. Some feel there are other options. "We're not utilizing the space as well as we could," said Lonnie "As a result, if we're going to transpose that to a brand new high school, there's not guarantee we'll use that space anymore effectively than we are now."
"Consequently, I would like them to re-explore and revisit the idea of replacing the primary school."
That actually was one of the ideas school district officials had. They felt this proposal would be the most beneficial in the long run, rather than adding "band-aids" to existing buildings over the years.
Overall, the total estimated cost of the project would be $66.7 million dollars. It would be roughly $45.25 million for construction of the proposed high school, which would be a bulk of that money, $42 million, and $3 million to make necessary renovations to the existing schools. Interest adds up to $21.45 million which gives you the $66.7 million figure. The vote on September 8th will require voters to answer two questions. The first asks voters to approve, or deny, the district's overall proposal.
The second is to increase the property tax levee above $2.70 per $1,000 of property valuation. School officials said that anytime you exceed that $2.70 limit, you must put it on the ballot. The increase could be as high as $4.05 per $1,000 of valuation.
The school district will hold informational sessions every Wednesday, at 7 P.M., in the Sergeant Bluff-Luton Community Center, up to August 26th. For other information, they also have a website page, which can be found at this link: http://bondissue.org/sbl/