TRENTON, January 29, 2014—Two of the three bond issues proposed in yesterday’s special school election received voter approval.  The authorized construction funding totaled close to $12 million.

Voters approved a proposal in Brooklawn, Camden County, where the school board plans to purchase a church and rectory, and convert them into classroom and administrative office space.  In Elmwood Park, Bergen County, voters approved borrowing for upgrades and renovations at four schools.

A bond issue was rejected in Montague, in Sussex County, where the school board had proposed more than $12.7 million in borrowing for the expansion and renovation of an elementary school to house middle school students.

The state had agreed to provide debt service aid to cover a portion of the project costs for all three proposals.

The fourth Tuesday in January one of five dates on which public school districts can submit construction referendums to voters.  The next special school election will take place on Tuesday, March 11.

New Jersey School Construction Referendum, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014


Total amount approved: $11,977,250 (amount requested: $24,974,944)

Amount of approved projects eligible for state reimbursement: $4,883,080

Brooklawn (Camden County) – Approved

Proposal would acquire the St. Maurice Church and Rectory in Brooklawn for the purpose of converting the church into classrooms and the rectory into school administrative offices. If approved, the board of education will also be able to use administrative office space at Alice Costello School for classroom space.

Total amount: $1,985,000

Amount eligible for state reimbursement: $660,356

Elmwood Park (Bergen County) – Approved

Project would encompass district-wide school renovations and upgrades, including replacement/upgrade of auditorium lighting, sound, HVAC, windows and a major portion of the roof at Memorial Middle/High School; interior renovations to provide additional classroom space at Gilbert Avenue and Sixteenth Avenue schools; and renovation/upgrade of the boiler, windows, lighting and more at Gantner Avenue School.

Total amount: $9,992,250

Amount eligible for state reimbursement: $4,222,724

Montague Township (Sussex County) – Rejected

Proposal would fund expansion and renovation of the Elementary School to accommodate the district’s middle school students.

Total amount: $12,997,694

Amount eligible for state reimbursement: $860,466

The New Jersey School Boards Association is a federation of 581 local boards of education and includes 81 charter school associate members. NJSBA provides training, advocacy and support to advance public education and promote the achievement of all students through effective governance.