Ogden School District board to vote on bonds, Ben Lomond High upgrades

Wednesday , February 28, 2018 - 5:00 AM1 comment

OGDEN — The Ogden School District Board of Education is expected to vote this week on a bond aimed at improving the Ben Lomond High School gym.

The school board is considering the approval of a $26 million lease-revenue bond to upgrade the high school’s gym. The upgrade was part of the failed $106.5 million bond proposal last year.

The school board is expected to cast a vote Thursday, March 1, at its work session.

Districts officials have said that a lease-revenue bond of that amount is preferred, as it would leave the district with some emergency money.

Lease-revenue bonds do not require public vote, as no taxes are used for the projects.

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Ogden School District spokesperson Jer Bates said he expects the school board to approve the lease-revenue bond.

The school district will also discuss potential school closures. Since January, the school district has presented a total of 11 scenarios attempting to address declining numbers in enrollment and deteriorating building structures.

“Timing is becoming more and more critical,” Bates said.

Some of the scenarios crafted by the school district call for some elementary school closures this year.

Bates recognized that the longer it takes the school district to reach a final decision, the more challenging it will be to close schools this year.

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“It is very pressing on all of our minds,” Bates said. “There is a sense of urgency, but we want to be very cautious with what we do.”

Bates said the school board will discuss the 11 scenarios and work on narrowing them down to three or four at a school board leadership meeting Feb. 28.

He said the school district plans to hold town hall meetings around the district to, based on the input received by the community, “gather some further refinements” on the scenarios.

Contact education reporter Sergio Martínez-Beltrán at smartinezbeltran@standard.net or 801-625-4274. Follow him on Twitter @SergioMarBel and like him on Facebook at Facebook.com/STANDARDEXSergio.

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