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Board of Directors to Vote on School Board's $4.9 Million Referendum Request Tonight

The Board of Education wants the money to make "critical repairs" to the town's public schools.

The Board of Education for "critical repairs" to the town's public schools. 

Voters will ultimately decide the merits of that request in a referendum come November, but whether that question ever even gets before voters appears to be in the hands of the Board of Directors, who have indicated they intend to vote on the school board's request as part of its Tuesday meeting. 

Members of the Board of Directors about the subject last week that they had some concerns with the size and scope of the school board's request, but also indicated that they intended to vote on the issue as part of Tuesday's meeting. 

The money includes funds to replace the roofs at Bowers, Waddell and Verplanck elementary schools, electrical repairs at Manchester High School, parking lot repairs at Arthur H. Illing Middle School and a number of other repairs.

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Any items from the school board that would appear on the ballot of a November referendum would be in addition to an already approved request for . 

Tuesday's meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. in the Lincoln Center Hearing Room at 494 Main St. Click here for the full agenda. 

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Jon Crickmore August 14, 2012 at 11:00 AM
Electrical repairs at the high school ??? Millions of dollars spent on the high school a couple years ago and now it needs electrical repairs? Do they really think tax payers are that stupid ?
Gerry Guay August 14, 2012 at 12:09 PM
Whatever happened to ongoing maintenance on an as needed basis in the schools? Someone was shirking their duties as I would certainly assume that a person or group of persons had the ultimate responsibility to insure that our schools were maintained over the years. "A stitch in time saves nine" except in Manchester and now the bill comes due for extensive repairs with another bond referendum and increased taxes to pay the bonding and interest for borrowing against our future again. Did anything change? Is there now a responsible person or body that has the authority and responsibility to insure the maintenance of the schools within our Education Budget going forward? If yes, where was it over the past decades?
tina bourke August 14, 2012 at 01:37 PM
Well if it needs repairs as stated, I hope it doesn't go so far beyond disrepair like Nathan Hale did and now closed because it went past the point of getting them done. I sometimes wonder why we don't solicit volunteers to make some repairs. This way those who want the library, those who want to clean up Broad st., and those who want to add onto Center Springs park may get their dream and it would make hopefully everyone happy!!!
James Bond August 14, 2012 at 02:19 PM
Jon, The repairs I believe are more upgrades due to the constant changes in computer software and power needs.Software that dosen't need to be changed that often.To the 2nd question of yours the answer is .......yep, real stupid!! Gerry, Tina does have a point; fix now or wait until its really expensive.The flip-side to this is who really is getting these repairs, the students? Ask where these repairs/updates are occuring at MHS? And remember if you go to the meeting and are allowed to ask questions the answers will be cloudy.Press for the details ;like getting an exact location list of the repairs and what areas they will serve. The admin. in this town is good at burying personal needs under the guise of "its for the students"
Bob Hetzel August 14, 2012 at 03:15 PM
Much of the problem lies in the fact that the Board of Directors sets the overall allocation to the Board of Education, but has NO control of how it is spent. The BOE priority is to meet the State and Federal mandates (many unfunded), knowing that when maintenance and repairs become critical, the BOD will have to bail them out. This is by state law, which needs to change.
James Bond August 14, 2012 at 08:32 PM
OR the BOD,which is aware of many of these problems can hold the BOE feet to the fire during their joint meetings,rather than rubber stamping evrything like when Ouelette was there.
Brian Hurlburt August 15, 2012 at 01:43 PM
I like that people are getting involved by voicing their concerns. All of these questions need to be asked so the taxpayers know what they are getting for the money the town is spending. In my opinion, the taxpayers missed a great opportunity to rebuild Manchester's schools when they voted against a new High School several years ago. A good quality school system (buildings included) has a direct connection to property value, and quality of life. The voters in Manchester were myopic not see that. I don't know if any of those who commented here have children in school, but I do. My daughter is at Manchester High School, and always comments about the poor shape the school is in. How can children be proud of their school, when the people in town ignore it? So, the challenge is for the Board Of Ed (BOE) to remind people what they are getting for the investment, like they should have done years ago when a new High School was voted down. The BOE needs to knock on doors, create a punch list that can be shared, and stand tall that this is what they believe in. Because, believe me, there is much more work that needs to be done than $4.9 million.

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