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J-E district not content with project vote

Jordan-Elbridge district residents had their final say Thursday on the capital project when they passed Proposition 1, but turned down Propositions 2 and 3 of the project.

Voters expressed their support for major repairs and upgrades to the four district school buildings, but could not justify the improvements to athletic facilities included in the second and third propositions. The estimated cost of the approved plan is $21.9 million.

"We are ecstatic, we are very pleased with the turn out," Assistant Superintendent of Business and Finance Bill Hamilton said Thursday night after the final tallies were in.

Thursday evening the polls were busy, with the line of waiting voters snaking out into the hallway at times.

Polling place volunteer and district resident Elsie Gorham said the turnout for the capital project vote was one of the biggest she had ever seen. She noted there were many signs posted throughout the community urging people to vote, but she had not noticed any negative signs.

Though the public information sessions and facilities tours received relatively low attendance, last week's vote drew more than a thousand residents to the polls.

Among them was Brandie Ashby, a district employee and resident who said the capital project vote was the first public vote she had ever participated in.

Her main concern was the storm water retention basin.

"That's bad, and I know it's bad," Ashby said of the basin. "It doesn't do its job."

For some younger voters, the controversial all-weather field caught their attention.

Stephanie Starratt, 18, a J-E graduate, was back at school last week to vote. Her main reason for voting, she said, was to support the plan for the all-weather field, which did not ultimately pass.

Sixteen-year-old Stephanie Pieklik, a junior at J-E, was not able to vote but had formed opinions on the issue.

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