Small Town News


Sixth time seems to be the charm

Shelton-Mason County Journal of Shelton, Washington

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First count: Voters approving $24.4 million school bond

Voters in the Pioneer School District on Tuesday appear to have passed a $24.4 million bond to build a new middle school, 10 new classrooms in the primary school, a new covered play area and other improvements. The bond received 61.15 percent of the vote to surpass the required 60 percent supermajority.

As of 8 p.m. Tuesday, the bond had received 1,782 yes votes and 1,132 no votes.

An updated count was scheduled for Wednesday afternoon, after the Journal had gone to press.

The Mason County Auditor's Office reports voter turnout was 43.75 percent. The vote is scheduled to be certified Feb. 24.

"I can't be happier for the Pioneer community," said Superintendent Marty Brewer. "We desperately need the facility and I'm so appreciative of the community for understanding our needs."

Brewer added, "Now it will be our district's commitment to follow through on what we promised the community."

The funded projects also include expanded parking, relocating district offices to portables, a bus drop-off area and storm water detention ponds.

The Pioneer School Board will next meet Feb. 24 and will talk about its next steps, including selecting an architect, Brewer said.

The bond will increase property taxes for district residents by about $1.15 per $1,000 of assessed value for district property owners.

The state will contribute an additional $1.5 million to the projects.

This was the sixth time in recent years the district has tried to pass a bond. Similar bond measures for Pioneer school construction failed with 48 percent approval in February 2011, 52 percent in April 2011, 56 percent in February 2013, 57 percent in November 2013 and 59.5 percent in April 2014.

The bond that failed by a handful of votes last April called for $23.8 million.

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Original Publication Date: February 12, 2015

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