A quarter of a billion dollars to upgrade school facilities. That is the bond levy amount the Bend-La Pine School Board is asking voters to approve come November.
“Bend Senior High is the original high school for Bend. It was once upon a time located just behind me,” said Bend-La Pine Schools Board Chair Melissa Barnes Dholakia. “It’s time that that facility really gets some love and gets some upgrades.”
Bend-La Pine school board members voted unanimously Tuesday to place a $250 million bond levy on the ballot this November.
“Much of the safety work, including fencing of campuses, including secure vestibule was funded through our last bond. This allows for those final pieces of those safety improvements to be made,” said Barnes Dholakia.
A BLS sites and facilities committee narrowed down 87 priority projects from more than 400 projects before submitting them to the board with costs June 21st.
More than $150 million would go towards the Bend High Master plan, where a few buildings will stay.
“We have three great buildings,” said Melissa Barnes Dholakia. “We have a fantastic auditorium, we have a beautiful career and technical education center and we have a brand new Maxwell center and the Maxwell Center was funded through the previous bond.”
Other older buildings will no longer be there.
“The remaining buildings actually will be completely replaced,” said Melissa Barnes Dholakia. “They will be demolished.”
The obligation bond will not increase taxes, but will keep taxes the same from the previously passed school bond.
“Really what this bond measure is, is that it allows us to continue with that tax that is already in place and it does not increase it, which allows us to continue with the work that is needed to be done,” said Barnes Dholakia.
The rest of money will go towards improvements around the school district.