The Eastwood school board has scheduled a special meeting for March 10 at 7:30 a.m. to discuss a proposed bond issue.
Superintendent Brent Welker said he will have an official statement on any board action after the meeting.
The board recently agreed to seek voter approval of a bond issue to fund the local share of construction costs for a new elementary school at the central campus.
But instead of asking voters to approve a 5.8-mill, 28-year bond that would partially fund a new K-8 building – which had been rejected by voters in November – the board is opting to scale the project back in favor of a 3.2-mill bond to construct a K-5 building.
Had it passed, the November bond issue would have generated about $18.3 million in local revenues and leveraged another $13.5 million from the Ohio School Facilities Commission.
Under the new proposal, school officials plan to also bring a fiber optic line to the campus.
Residents of the school district who voted against the bond issue in November seem to be steadfast in their opposition to another issue, but some could be swayed if the economy improved or the district sought a lower millage, according to a survey the district conducted recently.
Residents who voted no in November were asked to choose from four survey statements that best described their opinion about another possible bond issue:
• 43 responders (14.5 percent) said they would vote yes on a lower millage for a smaller project.
• 175 responders (59 percent) said they would vote no regardless of any millage amount.
• 68 responders (23 percent) said they would vote yes if the economy improved.
• 25 (8.4 percent) said they would vote yes if the plan included retaining elementary schools in Luckey and Pemberville.
• 198 (41.3 percent) said they would support any bond issue using matching funds from the OSFC.
• 147 (30.6 percent) said the project is unnecessary and they wouldn’t support it at this time.
At the time the survey was conducted, Mr. Welker said he and the board had “deep concerns” with the timing of any future bond issue.
He said the OSFC funding share expires in August.
The board has the option of placing another bond issue on the ballot in May or August under current OSFC guidelines but school officials said they planned to meet with the commission to ask them to consider extending the funding offer at the current level another four to six months to allow for improvement in the economy.