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Voters To Decide $16-Million School Repair Job - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Voters To Decide $16-Million School Repair Job

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  Residents in one northern valley town head to the polls tomorrow, to decide whether to fix problems, which one school official calls… embarrassing.

  Crookston voters will decide whether to approve a 6-million dollar bond issue, that's part of an overall package of 16-million dollars to repair school buildings.

   One of the most expensive repair problems is at the Crookston High School. Its roof is leaking and causing water damage inside. It's a problem that school officials say will only get worse.

  School Board President, Frank Fee calls it embarrassing.

Frank Fee, School Board President: "It's up keep that hasn't been done for a number of years. In the high school, even though it's fairly new, we have water pouring into classrooms. That's embarrassing. We have to have that fixed."   

  Plus a new roof is needed at Washington Elementary, along with a new boiler. It's the same story over at the swimming pool. It needs a roof and boiler. And a new boiler is needed at Highland Elementary. And there are problems with parking lots, windows and ventilation systems.

  Superintendent, Chris Bates says if voters say yes to a 6-million dollar bond issue, it will not mean an increase in taxes, because the mortgage on the high school is being paid off.

Chris Bates, Superintendent: "What we've tried to do is make the total package the same amount of taxation the people have been paying for the mortgage on this building for the last 19 years."

  And school officials say if voters say no, it's likely their only option will be to call another vote, since these are problems that are not going to go away.

Chris Bates: "If it doesn't go through I would expect the school board to decide to go back to the voters and ask again."

  The rest of the total 16-million dollar repair package is already built into their budget.

  Polls are open between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. Tuesday at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Crookston. We'll have results for you as soon as they're available.

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