School board, town meet on bond issue
To meet the demands of a rapidly growing school district and dilapidated school buildings, the Roaring Fork School District is getting creative.Tuesday night, Re-1 board members met with Carbondale Town Council members to discuss an estimated $82.3 million bond issue the district will ask voters to pass in November.The bond would pay for a new elementary and high school in Carbondale as well as safety upgrades and expansions to Glenwood Elementary School, Carbondale Middle School, Roaring Fork High School and Glenwood Springs High School.Carbondale supports the idea behind the bond – better, safer facilities for the 4,800 students attending Re-1 schools – but needs to see a detailed outline on how the money will be spent, said Carbondale Mayor Michael Hassig.School board president Sue Hakanson started by explaining how the district assessed the needs for facility upgrades. Assessors went through each property with a fine-toothed comb, looking at everything from falling ceiling tile to temperatures in the classroom.To pay for all necessary upgrades, the district would need to ask voters for $123 million, Hakanson said.”That was the wish list,” Hakanson said. “To pay for safety and critical improvements, we need 53 million.”The district rearranged figures several times before coming up with a tentative figure; $82.3 million.The district decided on asking for more money than would pay for initial safety upgrades because in the long run, continuing to patch structural problems will cost more money than building new buildings, Hakanson said.Hakanson’s statement is based on advice from the assessors asserting that it’s financially wise to replace a building needing repairs that amount to 60 percent or more of its assessed value.The bond issue would pay for the following improvements:Crystal River ElementaryThe bond would pay for expansions. Carbondale ElementaryThis school would be closed.Carbondale Middle SchoolWill be moved to Roaring Fork High School. A high school will be built.More details will appear in a future edition of the Post Independent. Contact Ivy Vogel: 945-8515, ext. firstname.lastname@example.org
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