by ADAM GRUENEWALD
Central School District voters narrowly approved a bond issue for improvements to the Central Elementary School on Tuesday.
Voters approved the measure 299-288, with a 50.94 percent approval.
The $3.3 million of 15-year general obligation bonds will provide for the acquisition and betterment of school sites and facilities, including the construction and equipping of an addition to the Central Elementary School.
Speaking on election night, Superintendent Brian Corlett said he was pleased with the results.
“We obviously put that out there as forward thinking to save the taxpayers money,” said Corlett. “We’re happy that it passed.”
Also, voters re-elected incumbents Elroy Latzig and Rich Schug to the school board, along with newcomer Nicole Evenski. David Bleichner was not elected. The third seat had been vacated by Julie Karnes.
Schug captured 421 votes, or 28.95 percent, Latzig won 403 votes, or 27.72 percent, and Evenski had 388 votes, or 26.69 percent. Bleichner garnered 228 votes, or 15.68 percent. There were also 14 write-in votes.
Newcomer Nicole Evenski said her campaigning door to door leading up to the election paid off.
“I’m excited to be part of what’s coming up for the board,” she said, adding the margin came as a shock. “I was hoping to win and was pleasantly surprised.”
Latzig said he expected the election to end up with the three candidates who won and is eager to work with Evenski and the rest of the board.
“I think she’s going to work well,” said Latzig. “I hope new members bring new ideas and a new way to look at something… You don’t always look at it (an issue) in a different light. Even if you’re for something, you want to ask ‘did we look at this possibility or outcome?’”
Schug said he was happy with the results on the bond issue and his own reelection.
“I’m pleased I was able to get back on there, the voters showed their support for me,” he said.
Schug said more education was needed about the referendum, but he was glad is passed.
“It’s better to be on the plus side of 11 than on the short side,” he said.
Evenski and Latzig agreed the narrow margin for the bond issue came as a surprise, but said they could have pushed the message more.
“I was surprised it was that close,” said Latzig. “We didn’t get out and campaign or really push it or tell people that it was out there… taxes only go up $20 a month for a $200,000 and we didn’t get that message out there.”
All results are unofficial until they are canvassed on today, Nov. 14, at 6 p.m.
Visit http://www.sos.state.mn.us for full statewide election results.
Contact Adam Gruenewald at firstname.lastname@example.org.