$16 Million School Bond Passes
Board Representative's Suspension Adds Wrinkle To Process
By Samar Fay Courier Editor
Published: Wednesday, March 20th, 2013
In a high-turnout election last Thursday, Glasgow School District voters passed a $16.8 million levy to build a new K-5 Irle School and make substantial improvements at East Side and Glasgow High School. The vote was 1,151 to 945.
The vote was roughly reversed in the defeat of the second levy requested, $2 million to remodel the entrance of the administration building to ADA standards, upgrade the GHS auditorium seating, improve the high school playing fields and pave the parking lot. The levy went down, 857 in favor to 1,225 against.
The election had a 68 percent voter response, about twice the election result for the previous two years. It was the first time a mail-in ballot was used in a school election here.
“We’re really excited about it,” said Superintendent Bob Connors. “We’re ready to move forward, get a design and construction team.”
In a similar mood, School Board Chairman Alison Molvig said, “The board is thrilled. We are going to be moving forward with the buildings in the most responsible way we can as best for the kids and the community.”
As for the rejection of the second bond request, Molvig said, “The public made their opinion known. Maybe we can do something down the road. The major thing is getting the school built. We respect the vote and move forward.”
“It is what it is,” Connors said. “The important thing is we have the buildings to renovate and build.”
Connors returned early from a trip to the Legislature in Helena to deal with a wrinkle in the process. On Tuesday a copy of a 2011 action by the Montana Board of Architects and Landscape Architects to suspend the license of Paul Bishop, the school board’s owner’s representative in the construction, was circulated among the school board members. The Courier also received a copy.
Having a current architect’s license is not necessarily a requirement for being an owner’s rep, but the suspension was done for alleged unprofessional conduct, which Bishop did not defend himself against, according to the architect board’s documents.
Connors said the school board will fully look into this issue. A Building Committee meeting scheduled for Wednesday has been postponed for a week and a special school board meeting will be called, Connors said.
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