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City Council supports crucial Auburn school measures on ballot

Built in 1950, Auburn High School has expanded five times in 60 years. But the aging facility is in disrepair. A modernization and reconstruction bond would fund critical improvements.  - Courtesy rendering/NAC Architecture
Built in 1950, Auburn High School has expanded five times in 60 years. But the aging facility is in disrepair. A modernization and reconstruction bond would fund critical improvements.
— image credit: Courtesy rendering/NAC Architecture

The Auburn City Council passed a resolution Monday night, supporting the Auburn School District's educational and operations replacement levy and the Auburn High School modernization and reconstruction bond.

The school district placed both measures before the voters in Tuesday's special election.

School district officials says Proposition 1, the replacement levy, is essential to maintain educational programs and services for students, including small class size, instructional programs, special education, athletics and activities, transportation, and maintenance and custodial services. The levy is not a new tax. It replaces the expiring 2008 levy.

District officials say Proposition 2, the modernization and reconstruction bond, will fund critical improvements at the 61-year-old downtown high school while keeping school taxes level The aging building is in disrepair and is no longer cost-effective to operate and maintain. It fails to meet many of the school district's facility standards.

Mayor Pete Lewis and the council support both measures in a resolution, saying: "Whereas, in light of the value and the benefits to the citizens of Auburn that the Auburn School District be able to continue to provide a high-quality education in modern, efficient facilities to the students in the district, it isappropriate that the City Council support the (ballot) measure."

The plan

The modernized and reconstructed Auburn High School will:

• Be built at its current location in phases so students can safely remain on campus during the project.

• Improve heating, cooling and ventilation.

• Include seismic upgrades.

• Have a new front entry on East Main Street.

• Be under one roof with two points of entry.

• Increase student safety.

• Have off-street bus loading areas.

• Provide new classrooms and building technology.

• Increase on-site parking from 300 to 600 stalls.

• Include a large student commons and new synthetic turf baseball and softball fields.

• Improve access for the disabled.

• Include large parking lot adjacent to PAC, pool and main gym directly across from Auburn Memorial Stadium.

The combined passage of the levy and bond will result in level school taxes for the average homeowner in Auburn.

For more details, visit http://www.auburn.wednet.edu/Levy/Levy_Bond.html.

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