By CHERYL SCHWEIZER
For The Sun Tribune
WARDEN — A capital levy that would pay for additional security measures and upgrades to technology in the Warden School District is ahead in special election results announced April 23.
In unofficial results, Warden voters cast 194 “yes” votes (54.34 percent) and 163 “no” votes. Because the proposal was a capital levy, it requires a bare majority, 50 percent plus one vote, to pass.
The election will be certified May 3. If the proposal passes, it will generate $217,652 in the first year, $219,829 in the second year and $222,027 in the third year. Property owners would pay an estimated assessment of 46 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value. The owner of property worth $200,000 would pay $92 in taxes.
Once the election is certified, district officials will take the options to the Warden School Board and let board members set the priorities, said district business manager Veronica Perez.
The bond title said the levy would be used for “safety, security and technology improvements.” District superintendent Dave LaBounty said in an earlier interview that the improvements included remodeling school entrances, especially Warden High School/Warden Middle School.
New security cameras will be installed around the campus. Other upgrades are being considered, including new door locks.
The high school was “designed (and) engineered in a different time,” LaBounty said, and the district should be proactive in addressing changing times. Many school districts are redesigning buildings to limit entry to one door, he added.
The bond resolution proposed “acquiring, installing, implementing and modernizing student and teacher technology devices and other instructional technology equipment, infrastructure systems and facilities.” District officials also plan to make other technology and security upgrades, “all as determined necessary and advisable by the (school) board.”
Perez said timelines for the projects would be up to the school board.