Voters say yes
Story by Dan Hust
LAKE HUNTINGTON Sullivan West's effort to reduce and modify the project to complete the high school's athletic fields evidently paid off, as nearly 500 voters on Tuesday gave the district the green light.
The 474-325 vote means SW can proceed with the following:
• Resurface the elementary school's track
• Repair the nature/cross country trail in Jeff
• Replace the roof on the 1961 addition at Jeff
• Replace Jeff's underground fuel oil tank
• Commence construction at the elementary school of one baseball, one soccer, and one softball field by conducting all environmental remediation, including construction of a stormwater retention pond that's expected to help alleviate flooding in the Kohlertown area
• Complete construction of one baseball field, one softball field and one soccer field at Lake Huntington
• Construct and acquire the necessary equipment for the operation of a television broadcast system at the high school.
Tuesday's vote contrasted notably with a failed March 2011 vote, where 421 voters rejected a more ambitious and expensive proposition that would have included more fields at the high school.
Unlike that proposal's $5 million price tag, the total cost for this just-approved project will be under $3 million, paid for through existing capital reserve funds.
The addition of the TV studio also may help the district gain state aid, further reducing the local cost.
Supt. Nancy Hackett said SW is pleased with the community's support, and the board's Facilities Needs Committee will begin setting up a timeline for undertaking each project.
Breaking down the vote
As is the case with all of SW's votes, the three election districts encompass the three former school districts which merged into SW.
Interestingly, the former Delaware Valley district offered the largest amount of support, with 181 voters saying 'yes' compared to 93 saying 'no.'
Narrowsburg district voters were similar, with 127 approving and 85 rejecting.
Jeffersonville, however, featured a much closer split, with 166 in favor and 147 against.