Erie Residents Say "No" to School Bond Referendum

Apr 3, 2017

Voters in Erie Community Unit School District #1 defeated a proposal to borrow nearly $14 mil. to switch from 4 buildings to 2. The total cost of renovations & expanding the middle school would have been $24.5 mil.

(Previous version, April 3rd, 2017)

Residents of the Erie School District will vote Tuesday on a bond referendum to consolidate buildings. Students attend four schools, but two of them are more than 60 years old. And enrollment has declined, so a lot of space is unused.

Erie Superintendent, Brad Cox, says last year, the school board held community meetings to tell people about the problem, and hear what they had to say about fixing it. Eventually, the board decided two buildings could serve the needs of the 660 students plus staff.

The Erie school board has been saving money, and the district now receives sales tax revenue. So it's only asking for permission to borrow $13.8 million. Cox says that's about 56 percent of the cost of the $24.5 million project.

The plan includes tearing down one of the elementary schools and using the other for Erie School District administration. The high school would be renovated for use as a K-through-5 elementary, and the middle school would be expanded for sixth through 12th grades.