MARKED TREE, AR (KAIT) - A proposed six-mill increase for the Marked Tree School District had clear sailing Tuesday after voters overwhelmingly approved the request.
In unofficial numbers, the increase was approved by a 370-56 margin, Poinsett County Clerk Teresa Rouse said.
School officials earlier this year said they were asking for the increase to address several issues.
In a letter posted on the Marked Tree School District website, Superintendent Matt Wright addressed the concerns with students, parents, and community stakeholders on the need for the millage increase.
Wright said the money was needed to update school facilities.
The high school opened in 1949 and the third through sixth-grade wing of the elementary school and cafeteria were opened in 1959.
"Classrooms constructed 60 years ago aren't conducive to the educational needs of today's learner," Wright wrote in the blog post. "More importantly, our school is in need of some enhanced security/safety needs."
Wright said the state is willing to contribute more than $4 million to upgrade the facilities, and the millage increase will help in the demolition, construction, remodeling, and furnishing phases of the process.
Renderings of plans and specifics for each building were outlined in the letter.
Wright said he doesn't take this request lightly and because the state is offering to help it's a time to act.
"The fact that the state is contributing almost half of this project ($4,314,639) is a major factor in going for this millage," Wright said. "In essence, the state is giving us what we are asking of our community…what I mean is that our 6 mill increase will generate about $4,200,000 and the state is giving us $4,300,000."
He also included a chart to show property owners what this millage increase would mean.
You can read and view the full letter and see the plans click here.
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