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Board of Education to ask voters for $19 million in May

The money would be used to help build a second high school in the county.

The money would be used to help build a second high school in the county.

October 22, 2003|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

Vowing to move forward "with great hope," the Jefferson County Board of Education unanimously voted Tuesday night to seek approval from Jefferson County voters for a $19 million bond issue to help pay for a second high school in the county.

The bond issue, which also will help pay for a renovation of Jefferson High School, will be put before voters in the May 11 primary election next year.

The board of education has been talking about the bond issue for months as part of a comprehensive effort to get more funding for the school system to build new schools.

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The construction of a second high school and renovation of Jefferson High School is expected to cost about $48 million, school officials have said.

So far, $6 million has been obtained from the state Economic Development Grant Committee and the Board of Education is requesting $19 million from the state School Building Authority.

The Jefferson County Commissioners are considering passing impact fees to help the school system with new construction.

The School Board will formally ask the School Building Authority in Charleston, W.Va., on Nov. 18 for $19 million.

Superintendent of Schools R. Steven Nichols told School Board members Tuesday night during their meeting at Shepherdstown Middle School he wanted them to approve putting the bond issue on the ballot to show School Building Authority members that the school system is doing all it can to raise money locally for new school construction.

"This makes it formal," Nichols said.

Although School Board members said they can take the proposed $19 million bond issue off the ballot if some of the other funding sources are not approved, they said they would proceed with a positive attitude.

"We will move forward with great hope," said School Board member Delores Milstead.

Nichols could not say Tuesday night how much property tax bills would increase for county residents if the bond issue is passed.

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