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Funds will be used to repair and update aging facilities and expand vocational programs and early learning

PMG PHOTO: TONY AHERN - The building that houses Bridges High School was built in 1938. School bond funds will fund four new early learning classrooms, gym floor improvements, new flooring on the lower level, and new key/access control

Jefferson County School District voters have approved the passage of the district's $24 million bond measure.

It has been nine years since the passage of the last bond measure in the Jefferson County School District, the district said in a press release. By Wednesday, Nov. 3, approximately 1,807 of 3,131 votes were received in favor of the bond measure, 57.7%. Warm Springs voters passed the measure by a landslide, 230 yes votes to 20 no votes. Kutcher, East Madras, Central and Sunset precincts also stood solidly behind the measure. Of 13 precincts, four voted against the levy: Haystack, Lyle Gap, Round Butte and Circle M.

The approved bond measure is not estimated to increase the current tax rate due to savings from refinancing previously issued bonds and old bonds retiring. In addition, the district has qualified for a $4 million matching grant from the Oregon State Capital Improvement Matching Program.

"Thank you, voters of the Jefferson County School District," said Jefferson County School District Superintendent Dr. Jay Mathisen. "This proposed bond measure will allow the district to make critical health and safety improvements and upgrades to all of our schools. It will truly allow our students to flourish in 509-J and get better every day."

The $24 million bond measure will allow the school district to protect the community's assets by improving the health, safety, and security in all of the district's buildings, repairing and updating aging facilities, and expanding vocational and early learning opportunities. The bond will also allow the district to make improvements at the Madras High School soccer fields.

The district will be releasing information about the Citizen Oversight Committee in the coming weeks. This committee is an independent, volunteer, citizen-led committee established to oversee the use of bond funds. Jefferson County School District will plan to issue bonds in early 2022 with bond projects estimated to begin in the summer of 2022.

"This is a critical moment for the future of our district and for our students," shared Laurie Danzuka, Jefferson County School District board chair. "The district will now be able to improve the health, safety and security for all students. We are beyond grateful for our community for believing in this bond measure and supporting our current and future students."

For questions or more information about the Jefferson County School District Bond Measure 16-98, \ visit https://509jschoolbond.org.


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