In a special board meeting, the Guthrie Board of Education agreed to authorize an election to propose a $2.4 million school bond issue to voters in the upcoming November general election. School officials say this action will address the most critical areas of the district.
If approved by voters on Nov. 4, the $2.4 million bond issue would be spread out over 24 months through property taxes within the school district’s boundaries.
“That is our target for the community for our millage rate,” Superintendent Dr. Mike Simpson said following the six-minute meeting. “We wanted to shorten this term based on the projects that we are going to place in the bond issue so that we can look at the next issue because this is a progression.”
“The next issue will be a longer duration and a greater monetary value.”
Superintendent: Urgent issues addressed in upcoming school bond election
The major portion of the bond proposal would address repairs, renovations and improvements to three elementary schools: Central, Fogarty and Guthrie Upper Elementary as well as Guthrie High School. Specific items include roof replacement, replacement of HVAC unit ventilators, window replacement, tuck point exterior repair and athletic track repair. The total cost adds up to $2.1 million for the projects.
“There have been some deferred items over the years that are of greater critical need at this time,” Simpson said. “At the end of this issue we have insured the value of the current buildings that we have on these projects before we address our growing need for classroom space.”
“We looked at our buildings and looked at the most critical need for our current buildings to insure their value and sustainability. We took those and attempted to prioritize them based on the amount of money available,” Simpson added.
The remaining $300,000 portion of the bond would address classroom technology equipment, including additional computers, software licenses and service agreements.
“Whatever we do we want to make this a district wide initiative. That’s a start to this (technology). It’s not anywhere near enough,” a honest Simpson said.
When asked about the timing of the bond election as it comes near the same time as sales tax propositions from both the City of Guthrie and Logan County Commissioners, Simpson says it will be interesting, but is hopeful the community sees what the schools are currently needing to address.
“Our hope is that the community understands the needs that we have.”