Wilson school bond referendum

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WILSON -- Wilson school administrators are asking for the community's support. In less than two weeks, voters will head to the polls to decide the fate of a multi-million dollar school bond. Shelby Levins reports.

The bond issue totals $5.55 million. The bulk of that, more than $5 million would go toward actual brick and mortar and facility updates - that's proposition one. Proposition two of the bond election is for a little more than $150,000, going toward bus purchases. All things school leaders say are badly needed.

Just 20” by 16” – that’s the size of the current Ag Ed class space at Wilson High School. It's actually a trailer that was fashioned into a make-shift classroom back in 1997. Ten years later it's still being used by Ag teacher Joe Buzidragis, but he's hoping voters will elect to change that.

"Kids themselves react to the facility they're in, so if they have a nice facility it makes it better as far as learning goes,” Buzidragis said.

Career Tech, the state department of Career and Technology Education, said the facility didn't meet the minimum recommended guidelines for and agriculture educational facility back in 1999. “Mr. Buz,” as the students call him, says there’s no room to store any learning materials, much less 25 student and their desks.

"A dungeon or a cave, I've heard booth those comments made because it's so small,” Buzidragis said.

On September 8th residents will choose whether approve a bond to build a new Ag building. That's just one of the four projects on the district's 5.55 million series bond that’s spread over 16 years.

"We feel like our students deserve the very best. We don't want them in any second-rate facility,” Superintendent Kevin Stinson said.

The bond referendum also includes two new buses; new roofs to replace the leaky ones on the elementary and middle school; and a new gym to replace the old one, built back in 1979. Superintendent Stinson says the new gym will benefit the entire community, with an F-5 rated storm shelter.

"If the voters approve this new gym, we could almost house the entire population of the town with our two storm shelters,” Stinson explained.

Stinson says he hopes voters approve the bond for the betterment of the whole community. “Mr. Buz” say's he simply wants what's best for the students and for the future.

As for how the series bonds would affect your property taxes - if you pay $500 in property taxes a year, your taxes would increase $129.26. Superintendent Stinson says that breaks down to about $10.00 more a month or about $0.30 a day.

The bond needs a super-majority, or more than 60% of the total votes, to pass.

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