HASTINGS – On the May 12 election ballot, there is a vote about the Hastings Public Schools $6 million project at Morton Elementary. This will not change anyone’s property taxes. They will be the same amount whether this passes or fails.
The Morton Elementary project is the last leg of their project to take the number of elementary schools in HPS from six down to five. Jeff Schneider, the Superintendent of Hastings Public Schools, says that this will be a complete remodel.
And we would house all of our preschool center there. We would also try to sell our admin office and move our administrative offices over to that building as well. This is the last building bond issue I see us doing in the next twenty years. I think the next one will be for the high school and at that time, we’re talking roughly 2040, that’ll be about a ninety year old high school and it’s going to be time to address that. But the nice thing is we have a vehicle in place, through this elementary project, where in 2040 the voters can keep things going without having a tax increase and then address the high school.
They were able to refinance bonds last fall that saved them $2 million and they are in the process of refinancing other bonds to save another $1 million. Schneider says they can get the additional $3 million for this project from their existing levy and that is why there will be no tax increase.
He also said that if they were asking for a tax increase they would be telling people to vote no, considering the current economic climate.