Voters Ask For Details On School Bond
$18.6 Million Building Project Goes To Voters March 14
By Samar Fay
Published: Wednesday, January 30th, 2013
More than 20 people gathered in the high school library Monday evening to hear more about the two bond questions that the Glasgow School Board will put to a vote on March 14.
Most of the questions asked for details on the plans listed in a flyer sent last week to all registered voters in the school district. The $18.8 million total project is split into two bond questions. Bond question 1 is a request for $16.8 million to replace Irle School and refurbish East Side School and Glasgow High School. Bond question 2 is a request for $2 million to remodel the entrances at the central office to ADA standards and tackle several projects at the high school.
The biggest single item is replacing Irle School, which was built in 1958. By constructing on the same site, next to the old building, school will continue uninterrupted.
The district kitchen will be moved from Irle School to the high school because the Irle kitchen is too small and doesn’t have enough storage space. Delivery trucks can’t back up to a dock and unload pallets at Irle as they can at the high school. The pallets have to be opened and unloaded piecemeal.
On a financial level, moving the kitchen balances funding between the K-8 elementary funding district and the 9-12 high school funding district.
Another project at the high school is modifying the locker rooms. Glasgow is the only school in District 2B that only has two locker rooms, which makes the traffic pattern a huge headache, now that girls’ and boys’ basketball games are held together. The rooms are large enough to split in half, according to Activities Director Willie Thibault.
“Bidding tournaments will become much more competitive,” Thibault said. “Malta stresses they have four locker rooms. Our girls’ and boys’ teams share locker rooms. This is a tournament town. It’s a big shot in the arm economically.”
The officials’ rooms need improvement too. According to referee Stan Ozark, the Scottie changing room is the worst one in the league.
At East Side, five more classrooms are needed to accommodate grades 6 through 8, along with more bathrooms and a commons/lunchroom. The shop, home ec room, library and kitchen need improvement, as well as the configuration of the drop-off area.
Bond Question 2 comprises a miscellany of needed work. The high school auditorium seats are worn out and having no center aisle is not convenient. The improved HVAC system has already produced savings but needs to be finished.
There are safety issues with having concrete-edged jump pits at the football field. Officials lay mats over them during games, but it’s not enough to prevent possible injury. They would like to move the jump and pole vault pits and lay multi-purpose artificial turf to form a football and softball field.
Paving the parking lot would end the chronic pothole farm. Community members are interested in a walking path around the site.
“The most important part is the building (Bond question 1),” Superintendent Bob Connors told the group on Monday. “If that doesn’t pass, Bond 2 fails automatically. Question 2 is something that would enhance Glasgow schools. Could we live without it? You bet.”
Connors reviewed the mill levy impact analysis, noting that Nebraska has just approved a revised route for the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which will bring in revenue when it is built through Valley County on its way from Canada to Texas. The parent company, TransCanada, has quoted a low figure of $15 million in added taxable value to the county and a high of $26 million in added value. With no pipeline, taxes on a $100,000 property for Bond question 1 would be $143.57 a year. Adding in the high value figure for the pipeline, the same property would only be taxed $48.54 a year.
The public will be offered a tour of Irle School on Monday, Feb. 11, at 6 p.m.
“This is a really important meeting,” Connors said. “We want to show people we’re not making it up about the building falling apart.”
Another public tour is scheduled at East Side on Monday, Feb. 25, at 6 p.m.
Connors has been meeting with community organizations to explain the two school bonds, and said he is willing to talk to “meet and greet” groups in homes to reach more people. Trustee Nick Dirkes invited people to contact any school board member with their questions.
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