Video: Lowndes County School Board Officials Hopeful On Bond Issue

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LOWNDES COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI) – Next week, Lowndes County residents will head to the polls to vote on the $44 million dollar bond referendum.

The  bond issue didn’t pass last year but that hasn’t stopped the Lowndes County School Board yet.

They have lowered the bond amount and revamped their plans, but as WCBI’s Alyssa Martin went to find out, will it pay off?
Low voter turnout was to blame for the bond issue not passing last year.

Now, Lowndes County School Board members are in the final push, educating voters on the $44 million dollar bond issue.

They’ve crunched the numbers and say that the bond will not cause a tax increase for residents, being paid off instead, with money coming in from Lowndes County industries.

“Our tax assessor and collector, Greg Andrews, has been able to verify we’ve got this revenue coming in that will not require a tax increase. We could do all these building projects at no cost to our people because of the revenue coming in from industry and it’s just a golden opportunity to address some of the critical needs that we have in the district,” said Lowndes County Superintendent Lynn Wright.

If passed, the bond will include a new, centralized career-technical center, a new high school at New Hope, upgrades and additions at Caledonia and renovations at West Lowndes.

Wright says Lowndes County is 1 of 3 districts in the state without a career-tech center and having one would open doors of opportunities for students.

“So many of the local industries are having to go outside the county to fill these jobs and we just really feel it is a need that we have to work with EMCC and local industry and provide training and the skills for our students so they can fill a lot of these jobs,” added Wright.

Many voters agree. Having a central vo-tech center is critical for the success of Lowndes County students.

“Not everyone is academics. We definitely need students that are going to have hands-on experiences, be able to have some type of trade, so I feel that’s very important,” said resident Susie Oglesby.

“It’ll help I think bring industry in if our kids are better educated in different types of vo-tech and they’ll have a skill to offer them,” said resident Ronny Harrison.

Others say the bond will impact all residents and hope to see it pass.

“I think our kids are so very important that we need to make sure we’re all out there voting and we get everyone out there to vote; parents, grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles. Whether you have someone in the school system or not, it’s going to affect everyone in Lowndes County, so everyone should be out voting for it,” said resident Aimee Bradley.

Lowndes County residents will vote on the bond issue Tuesday, May12th.

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