HASTINGS-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. -- The Hastings Board of Education approved a resolution on Feb. 5 that offers a new proposal for the renovation of the school facilities with a vote set forWednesday, March 26.
A previous $8.1 million capital improvements plan that included a controversial renovation of the district's athletic complex at Reynolds Field with an artificial, all-weather field surface failed in an Oct. 22 vote.
According to a report by the school board, the latest proposal includes two parts; the first provides for all of the planned building improvements and repairs to Hillside Elementary, Farragut Middle and Hastings High schools included in the October bond vote as well as a regulation track and natural grass field at Reynolds and additional grass fields at nearby Burke Estate.
A second proposition allows an additional expenditure to improve the existing athletic fields at the Burke Estate, reconstructing the field hockey, soccer and baseball fields.
Residents will vote on each of the propositions separately (voters will flip one lever – either yes or no – for each part).
The maximum cost of the building and track/field work in Proposition One is $8,081,147, coming in more than $500,000 below the cost of the first bond referendum. The building work represents just over 50 percent of the total, at $4,053,208, with the work at Reynolds and the Burke Estate making up the balance, or $4,027,939.
The maximum cost of Proposition Two, the option to tier the fields at the Burke Estate, is $569,554.
If both propositions are passed, the maximum cost will be similar to the October proposal at $8.6 million.
"Whichever propositions are approved by the voters, the district will finance using the same combination planned for the first referendum, with $500,000 from the Capital Reserve Fund and a bond for the balance," the board statement reads."
The board's latest proposal is based the events of the past year, including the first vote’s results -- 1,543 to 1,047 against -- an exit survey, conversations with various interested residents, and public meetings and comments and workshops held in the past two months.
"The plan represents a consensus on what we think will balance the most pressing concerns expressed by residents with the district’s needs to maintain the integrity and function of our buildings and support the school and community athletic programs in a cost effective way," the Board said.