GODDARD, Kan. (KSNW) – The Goddard board of education Monday night approved a ballot measure to put a $52 million bond resolution to district voters. The vote was unanimous.
District leaders aim to put the bond issue on the next ballot to make improvements to all 12 of the USD 265 school buildings.
The improvements start with issues like parking and mechanical upgrades, but some of the biggest changes are geared towards safety.
The district needs to make repairs to the parking lots it already has and add more parking where it’s needed most, according to a press release from Dane Baxa, USD 265 director of community relations.
Mechanical updates include replacing older and inefficient HVAC, lighting and electrical systems with more modern and higher efficiency rated alternatives.
One example would be the lighting in most of the older buildings.
Many of those buildings require near constant maintenance, which costs the district both time and money, according to Baxa.
New lighting, paid for through the proposed bond resolution, would include LED fixtures that last longer and require less energy to operate.
While lighting is important to the district, safety is another major concern.
The proposal breakdown includes new storm shelters to nine of the Goddard’s 12 school buildings.
The district conducted a needs assessment where they found that only three of the 12 schools currently have rated storm shelters.
The proposed bond would ensure that every building has a shelter to match the specific school’s population.
The district is also considering updates to all classroom doors that include hardware with intruder prevention security features.
As the proposed bond issue stands right now, for a $100,000 house in Goddard, property taxes would increase $23 a year. That’s $1.92 a month.
The district was able to refinance existing bonds with lower interest rates so if this bond passes, the mill levy for bond and interest payments in the Goddard district would be lower than it was just four years ago.
“The added or renovated spaces will enhance our student and staff’s safety, comfort and learning experience,” Baxa said.
If it passes, the proposed bond would make its way to the state for approval and eventually to the public for a vote in April.