Bond Election Held Tuesday; Moved to High School
Becky Moss and Lisa Wright hold signs informing drivers of the vote on Tuesday.
The single-issue vote regarding Oneida County’s Bond Election for a new elementary school was held on Tuesday. The extremely muddy conditions in the Event Center parking lot led the vote to being moved to Malad High School’s gym, where past elections had often been held.
After moving the voting equipment into the Event Center, the County Clerk’s office determined that the conditions created an overly prohibitive environment for voters, and the decision was made late Monday night to move the voting site to the High School. The heavy snowfall over the last month, as well as the recent warming trend had created a very difficult situation for any voters parking and walking through the lot at the Event Center, which was deemed to be an unreasonable burden.
Poll workers arrived bright and early at 5:00 a.m. to move the voting booths and other materials to the secondary location. Notification of the venue change was disseminated over social media, as well as a digital sign board outside the Event Center to redirect voters. Those involved in the bond hope for high voter turnout, so that the county’s voice can truly be heard on the issue.
The bond, which has been heavily discussed over the last several months, will allow School District 351 to utilize Bond Equalization Funds in its attempt to construct a new Elementary school on the site of the old High School. Should the bond pass, the new Malad Elementary School should begin construction within the year, and be ready for students by the beginning of the fall term in 2025.
Should the bond fail, the school will need to seek other resources for the construction of a new school, as the old building is in serious need of updating and upgrades. Without the bond funding, the cost of a new school will be out of reach of the district’s current budget.
The vote is the culmination of months worth of work on the part of the school district, the PTO, and other concerned community stakeholders who see the new school as an essential element of the county’s education programs and movement forward. There has been some push back against the idea of a new school, and the voting will settle the question of where the community would like to go in the future regarding its public educational facilities.
The Enterprise plans to publish the results of the bond election as an insert to this week’s paper. Since the election is a narrow single-issue vote, the results should be available by late Tuesday night, and included as a separate notice.