Southold School District residents will go to the polls Tuesday, Dec. 8, to cast their ballots on a nearly $9.8 million capital improvement project that includes a turf athletic field, security features and a reconfiguration of classroom spaces.
Specifically, residents will vote on the district’s plan to pay for the construction project by using $2 million in reserves and issuing a $7.76 million bond to fund the rest.
The district’s previous $14 million capital improvement bond, which carries a 20-year term, is scheduled to be paid off in June 2018. That bond was issued in 1998 for construction projects at the elementary school, district auditorium and secondary gymnasium.
The $14 million bond still costs the average homeowner about $200 a year. The new $7.76 million bond proposal is estimated to cost the average homeowner $130 annually, which school officials described as a “$70 reduction” per year for the average household when compared to the previous debt that’s about to be paid off.
Some of the proposed construction projects include a new track and synthetic turf multi-sport athletic field with organic fill, added security features, reconstructed parking areas with bus loops and student drop-off zones, conversion of the existing weight room into a TV production studio and relocation of the weight room to the athletic storage area.
Also included for the high school are a refurbished ROTC classroom, upgraded art room and photo studio and renovated cafeteria dining areas.
At the elementary school, the proposal involves upgrading the library media center and creating flexible learning spaces, among other projects.
If approved, school officials estimate construction will start in 2017 and take about two years to complete. Work is expected to be done over the summer, as well as nights, weekends and school holidays.
Polls are open between 3 and 9 p.m. For more information, visit the district’s website southoldufsd.com and check back here for voting results.
Photo: Southold School District. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder, file)