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Shen school board certifies land, capital project votes

Shen school board certifies land, capital project votes

Sale of 37 acres to town can take place
Shen school board certifies land, capital project votes
Adriane Wilders signs for her ballot at Gowana Middle School earlier this month.
Photographer: ERICA MILLER

CLIFTON PARK — The Shenendehowa Board of Education on Tuesday night pushed forward two significant developments for the district: the recent land referendum and upcoming capital project.

The board unanimously voted to certify the Dec. 5 vote that gave the district the green-light to sell its 37-acre parcel of wooded land to the town for $1.1 million. The final vote was 2,723 in favor to 535.

The certification brings the board one step closer to completing the land deal. The board will now work on title reports, said district Superintendent L. Oliver Robinson, and then look to close the sale within the next 45 days.

Though an exact closing date has not been set, Town Supervisor Phil Barrett believes the deal will probably be wrapped up sometime in January, and that a planning process would begin immediately after that. 

The town has pledged up to $350,000 to help with the process, and recently submitted a grant request to the Capital District Transportation Authority to secure $60,000 to go toward a planning consultant.

The board also certified the referendum approving the district’s $22 million capital project. That vote occurred on the same night, and passed with a vote of 2,238 to 973.

The board adopted a formal resolution on Tuesday for the capital project that will allow the district to finance a portion of the project through bonds. The district will provide $1.5 million toward the project from its capital reserve fund, and is seeking $20,726,194 using bonds.

Capital project construction, which will focus on renovating old science classrooms, integrating instructional technology into classrooms, upgrading high school and middle school kitchens, making improvements to the bus garage and tackling traffic issues around campus, is projected to start in 2020. The net cost of the project to taxpayers is estimated to be $5,426,400, with a tax increase of 0.4 percent over the next 15 years.

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