Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Day 66° Partly Cloudy
News >  Nation/World

Voters Approve District 81 Bond And Levy Includes Funds For Computers, Lc Remodeling

Voters overwhelmingly approved a $74.5 million bond Tuesday to remodel Lewis and Clark High School and put new computers in every Spokane District 81 school.

They also supported the district’s routine maintenance and operations levy for ongoing programs and teacher salaries.

Educators were jubilant. “This is just a great place to live, where the community supports education like that,” said Superintendent Gary Livingston.

“That is exciting. Gee whiz!” said teacher Nancy Wolfrum, who has been training other teachers to use the new computers.

Early on, educators were worried too few people would vote to validate the election. A turnout of nearly 26,000 was needed, and at least 60 percent had to vote “yes.”

Unofficial final results show the bond passing with 77.9 percent approval. The levy did even better with 81.7 percent approval.

Wolfrum suspects more people voted “yes” Tuesday because the district made sure parents and school employees had input into how the money would be spent. “That made a difference,” she said.

A few years ago, voters turned down a technology levy.

The Lewis and Clark project is expected to cost about $41 million, including state grant money.

Educators say the plan will retain the Gothic-Tudor style of the 86-year-old school, while fixing numerous defects. The interior will be largely gutted, and new electricity and plumbing systems added.

“It’s long overdue,” said Scott Jones, an LC alum. “It’s needed something like this to happen. We’re just so excited.”

The campus will also be expanded by purchasing blocks to the east and southeast of the campus.

The remodel work is expected to go to bid in July 1999 and be completed by 2001.

The vote also firmed plans for about 4,000 new computers and accessories that will be divided among all schools.

Some of the updated equipment will go into labs, while some will be placed in individual classrooms. All will help kids get up to speed on technology, educators say.

Other projects include additional classroom, locker and library space at North Central High School. Rogers High School is slated to get a remodeled auditorium and office, along with more classrooms.

All high school science rooms will be renovated, and Garry Middle School will get a ventilation overhaul and more P.E. space.

The bond will raise taxes for the owner of a $100,000 home from $99 to $146 per year. The debt will be paid off by 2009.

The two-year maintenance and operations levy will renew a levy that expires in December, and won’t increase taxes.

The new levy will raise $36.1 million in 1999 and $37.6 million the following year. It will pay for basic instructional programs, including teacher salaries and classroom materials.

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo

MEMO: This sidebar appeared with the story: VICTORY AT POLLS Spokane School District 81’s levy and bond issue won voter support at the polls Tuesday.

CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT BOND Unofficial results Needed 60 percent approval and voter turnout of 25,920 Votes Pct. Yes 23,372 77% No 6,794 23%

OPERATING LEVY Unofficial results Needed 60 percent approval Votes Pct. Yes 24,625 81% No 5,665 19%

This sidebar appeared with the story: VICTORY AT POLLS Spokane School District 81’s levy and bond issue won voter support at the polls Tuesday.

CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT BOND Unofficial results Needed 60 percent approval and voter turnout of 25,920 Votes Pct. Yes 23,372 77% No 6,794 23%

OPERATING LEVY Unofficial results Needed 60 percent approval Votes Pct. Yes 24,625 81% No 5,665 19%

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe now to get breaking news alerts in your email inbox

Get breaking news delivered to your inbox as it happens.