Sparta School District officials breathing a sigh of relief after a close vote to build a new elementary school.
Voters in the Sparta Area School District faced two referendum questions on the ballot shaping the future of the district.
Question one allowed the district to build a new elementary school for $28.5 million. Superintendent Dr. Amy Van Deuren says principals at the current buildings face space issues in the current buildings due to growth within the district. A new elementary would allow for more space as well as new equipment and facilities for future growth and modern educational environment.
The question passed 1,545 yes to 1,460 no.
Question two allowed the district to use $4 million to upgrade the current elementary schools, predominately Southside Elementary School. Dr. Van Deuren said a survey found Southside to be the only current elementary school with enough land to expand on. However, the expansion project became dependent on the building of the new school. Representatives said if question one failed, the district would not continue with plans for question two.
Question two passed by a larger margin, 1,894 yes to 1,075 no.
Van Deuren says some of the debt will be paid back with state funding helping pay off the debt quicker. If both are approved, residents will see a $38 increase on their property taxes for those with a $100,000 value.