School Bond information meetings set

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 8, 2004

JACKSON – The first public informational meetings regarding the upcoming Northampton County School Bond Referendum have been scheduled.

The meetings, which will be held at the J.W. Faison Center in Jackson from 7-8:30 p.m., are set for Monday, June 21 and Wednesday, June 23. Each will serve as an open forum for citizens to ask questions about the $9 million school bond that will be included on the July 20th primary election ballot.

The proposed bond would allow the county to utilize funds already collected from sales tax and earmarked for education, for paying off general obligation bonds the county would borrow to construct a new elementary facility.

A portion of the funds would be designated for roof repairs to some of the existing buildings as well as the construction of a new administration building and will not cause an increase in taxes.

Should citizens support the bond, students from Jackson Eastside and Seaboard-Coates Elementary Schools would be consolidated into one location, which according to Northampton County Schools Superintendent Dr. James Pickens, would be a savings to the county because it &uot;wouldn’t be plugging money into an educationally and energy deficient building that isn’t able to meet the changing needs of students and faculty.&uot;

The Northampton County School Board and Northampton County Commissioners conducted research, with the assistance of auditors and The Institute of Government, and determined that the county can afford the $9 million bond.

&uot;The construction of the much needed school would be supported by a secure stream of revenue,&uot; stated Northampton County Manager Wayne Jenkins. &uot;This is just another progressive step in the direction of improving education and economic development for the county.&uot;

Northampton County Schools’ administration will be on hand at the two forums to respond to questions and provide helpful information concerning the benefits and advantages that would result from the passage of the bond.

Citizens are encouraged to attend one of the two meetings to familiarize themselves with the issue, so they can make an informed decision on Election Day. Both meetings are open to the public.