School bonds win ap­proval

Pawtucket Times - - FRONT PAGE - By JONATHAN BIS­SON­NETTE jbis­son­nette@paw­tuck­et­times.com

PAWTUCKET – Vot­ers in the city dur­ing Tues­day’s elec­tion over­whelm­ingly ap­proved the eight mu­nic­i­pal bond ques­tions be­fore them, in­clud­ing a school bond mea­sure that asks for about $50 mil­lion in lo­cal spend­ing.

Vot­ers ap­proved Ques­tion 4, a bond that au­tho­rizes the is­suance of $220 mil­lion in bonds and notes for school build­ing con­struc­tion and ren­o­va­tion, but what the ad­min­is­tra­tion asked for is the au­thor­ity for about $50 mil­lion of lo­cal spend­ing. The mea­sure passed with 13,820 votes, or 84.9 per­cent, to 2,463 votes or 15.1 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to un­of­fi­cial re­sults from the Rhode Is­land Board of Elec­tions.

Ap­proval of the bond will pro­vide for ren­o­va­tions, in each of the next two years and be­yond, to up­grade school build­ings to ad­dress health is­sues, struc­tural in­tegrity, ed­u­ca­tional cli­mate, and safety con­cerns. The projects in­clude roof and floor re­pairs; as­bestos abate­ment; elec­tri­cal, plumb­ing, light­ing, se­cu­rity, and heat­ing up­grades; class­rooms, au­di­to­rium, and gym­na­sium im­prove­ments and equip­ping; and up­grades

re­quired un­der the Amer­i­cans with Dis­abil­i­ties Act.

Pawtucket will be able to tap into $4.5 mil­lion for im­prove­ments over the next two years to ath­letic com­plexes, play­grounds, and re­cre­ation ar­eas across the city, thanks to voter ap­proval on Tues­day. This bal­lot ques­tion was ap­proved 12,090 votes or 74.8 per­cent to 4,070 votes or 25.2 per­cent.

A por­tion of the money will be used to com­plete the Max Read Field ren­o­va­tion, re­pair bas­ket­ball courts, and pro­vide for ad­di­tional in­vest-

ments at recre­ational fields across the city in­clud­ing Morley Field, Pariseau Field, Slater Park, Mar­coni Gar­den, and Friend­ship Gar­dens.

Ques­tion 6 asked vot­ers to de­cide on $7 mil­lion for the de­sign, con­struc­tion, and re­con­struc­tion and re­pair of streets, side­walks, and other trans­porta­tion in­fra­struc­ture im­prove­ments, in­clud­ing drainage and land­scap­ing. This ques­tion passed muster with vot­ers by a mar­gin of 14,238 votes or 87.6 per­cent to 2,018 votes or 12.4 per­cent.

City of­fi­cials have said this would pro­vide a “sig­nif­i­cant amount of money” to­ward green­scape im­prove­ments

and also pro­vides money to the clean streets pro­gram, as well as pro­vid­ing for pot­hole fill­ing, crack seal­ing, and fills to pre­vent wa­ter in­fil­tra­tion.

Vot­ers ap­proved Ques­tion 7, which pro­vides $5 mil­lion in im­prove­ments and ren­o­va­tions to pub­licly-owned build­ings in­clud­ing the Leon Mathieu Se­nior Cen­ter, Pub­lic Works Cen­ter, po­lice and fire sta­tions, and the Pawtucket Pub­lic Li­brary. These funds will also as­sist with the con­tin­u­ing ren­o­va­tions to var­i­ous pub­lic build­ings to im­prove ac­cess for dis­abled res­i­dents as re­quired by law un­der the Amer­i­cans with Dis­abil­i­ties Act.

The ques­tion passed 10,660 votes or 68.8 per­cent to 4,830 votes or 31.2 per­cent.

Ques­tion 8 was for $5 mil­lion to pro­vide for needed repaving of streets in the city, which passed 13,741 votes or 87.8 per­cent to 1,902 votes or 12.2 per­cent.

Ap­proval of Ques­tion 9 gave the thumbs-up to $1.5 mil­lion to pro­vide for the con­struc­tion and re­con­struc­tion, in each of the next two

years, to the sewer and san­i­tary sys­tem in­clud­ing sew­ers and storm drains through­out the city. This stems from a com­pre­hen­sive as­sess­ment for the san­i­tary and storm drains in Pawtucket to pri­or­i­tize re­pairs. This bal­lot ques­tion passed 13,394 votes or 85.8 per­cent to 2,209 votes or 14.2 per­cent.

Vot­ers en­dorsed Ques­tion 10, al­low­ing Pawtucket to use $1 mil­lion for needed im­prove­ments to road and traf­fic de­vices in­clud­ing stop signs, traf­fic con­trol signs, traf­fic sig­nals, and traf­fic is­lands through­out Pawtucket. DPW is up­grad­ing to low-en­ergy traf­fic sig­nals and is also look­ing to up­grade all street signs. The tally was 10,008 or 65 per­cent in fa­vor and 5,386 or 35 per­cent against.

Ap­proval of Ques­tion 11 was for $1 mil­lion to pro­vide for the con­struc­tion, re­con­struc­tion and re­pair of bridges across the city. It passed 13,533 votes or 86.4 per­cent to 2,131 votes or 13.6 per­cent.

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