With bond passing, ‘Carson City-Crystal just became a destination district’

By Cory Smith • Last Updated 10:14 am on Wednesday, May 07, 2014

CARSON CITY — Chalk it up as a win for Carson City-Crystal Area Schools.

With 1,406 votes cast in Tuesday’s election, an $11 million bond proposal passed with 58 percent of the vote.

The bond was approved with 810 “yes” votes compared to 596 “no” votes.

The bond, which will extend a current debt millage of 4.2 mills for another 15 years and nine months and will generate $10,990,000 for the district, which will provide security and technology upgrades and transportation and facility improvements.

“With this bond passing, our students are going to have the ability to learn, advance and gain perspective that we would not have otherwise been able to give them,” said CC-C School Board Vice President Ben Adkins. “I think Carson City-Crystal just became a destination district.”

Approximately $5,242,000 in upgrades and renovation will take place at Lower Elementary School and $4,792,000 will occur at the Upper Elementary, Middle School and High School complex building.

Approximately $1 million generated from the bond will be devoted to technology upgrades, creating a one-to-one computer to student ratio, providing one computer per student on average, as opposed to the current system that features computer labs that do not currently meet the needs of the schools.

Superintendent Kevin Murphy said he was thankful for the large number of residents who came out to vote Tuesday.

“It’s a very happy moment for our district,” he said. “We’re rejoicing that we had a high turnout and we came out on the right end. This bond, it’s going to be a difference maker for us.”

Additional upgrades and improvements will include:

• Safety and security (separating cars, buses and students at the elementary school entrance canopies, replacing broken sidewalks, installing security cameras and vestibules and card access, moving the Central Office to the high school, moving the middle school office closer to the gym entrance and moving the stand-alone weight room from outside into the high school/middle school complex).

• Energy savings (replacing old units and piping to reduce operating costs and replacing two aging buses to avoid repairs in the near future).

• Healthy environments (replacing some of the district’s oldest equipment to provide better air quality and a better classroom climate).

• Consolidating resources (relocating administration to the high school, selling the current Central Office and demolishing the storage building in order to spend limited resources on fewer buildings and to cut operational costs).

Murphy said brainstorming with architects and engineers on the scope of work for the bond-funded projects will occur throughout this summer.

“We’re going to start talking immediately,” he said. “Our target was 20 months. We have to develop deeper plans and put things out to bid, but we’re going to hit the ground running. It’s going to be a whirlwind for the next couple of years.”

Murphy said he was especially proud of the school board and bond committee for working to keep the community informed throughout the past two months about the bond.

“I wanted a high turnout because that would validate our mission,” he said. “1,400 votes, that’s double from what we had seen recently. It’s been intense the last two months, but that was our job, to make sure people were informed.”

Adkins said he believes the community will be very happy with the results of Tuesday’s vote.

“This is something that I think the people of Carson City, Crystal and Hubbardston are going to see results from that they weren’t expecting,” he said. “It’s going to make an impact on the children of our community beyond what they thought was possible.”

Adkins also was thankful for the high voter turnout and for members of the community who helped to inform others in the community about information related to the bond.

“To feel the support of our community behind us, knowing that they believe in what we are doing, showing their support with their vote, it encourages us to continue to try to grow what we have started here in Carson City under Mr. Murphy’s leadership,” he said. “I think the community can take us to new heights that people may not be aware that we are capable of.”

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