TRENTON, March 10, 2017—Voters in five New Jersey school districts will go to the polls on Tuesday, March 14 to act on $119.7 million in construction projects, including new classroom space, athletic facility improvements, security and technology enhancements, and HVAC upgrades.
Construction proposals will be on the ballot in four counties: Atlantic, Burlington, Essex and Middlesex. Most of the proposed construction projects, if approved by voters, would be partially supported by state funds.
In addition to the construction proposals, voters in Orange, Essex County, will select two additional school board members on March 14. This special election follows last November’s referendum to switch from an appointed to an elected school board. State law requires that when voters in a district with a seven-member appointed school board approve conversion to an elected board system, the size of the board must increase to nine members.
The second Tuesday in March is one of five dates on which a school board may propose a bond issue or special question to voters. The next date available for special elections will be in September, although districts that hold school board elections in April may also hold bond referendums then.
Following is a summary of construction proposals on the March 14 ballot:
Total amount proposed – $119,766,997
Total amount eligible for state reimbursement – $29,077,224 (State reimbursement is made through payment of annual debt service aid.)
Renovations and improvements to Mullica Township Middle and Elementary schools, to include HVAC, parking, lighting improvements, and other improvements.
Total project cost: $1,901,030
State funds: $637,836
Renovations, alterations and improvements to Indian Mills Memorial Middle School and Indian Mills Elementary School.
Total project cost: $5,395,000
State funds: $1,721,200
Renovations and improvements to four schools, plus acquisition and renovation of the Central School building, previously owned by the district, to provide for early education and elementary school classes.
Total project cost: $23,758,854
State funds: $4,330,923
Proposal 1: Renovations and improvements to seven schools and the South Plainfield Athletic Complex.
Total project cost: $28,094,000
State funds: $9,526,000
Proposal 2 (contingent upon approval of Proposal I): Synthetic field at the athletic complex and related work
Total project cost: $1,400,000
Upgrades and improvements, including construction of a new elementary school on an existing site, to provide district-wide full-day kindergarten, technology upgrades, security upgrades, additional classrooms. Board capital funds of $1,550,000 will fund technology and security upgrades.
Total project cost: $59,218,113
State funds: $12,861,265
The New Jersey School Boards Association is a federation of the state’s local boards of education and includes the majority of New Jersey’s charter schools as associate members. NJSBA provides training, advocacy and support to advance public education and promote the achievement of all students through effective governance.