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January 15. 2013 8:34PM

White Mountains Regional voters to decide on school

WHITEFIELD - Residents in the five towns of the White Mountains Regional School District will weigh in on two warrant articles on this year's school warrant which address facility issues at the high school.

The regional school board held a public bond hearing Monday night for articles which, if approved in March, would allow the district to move forward with renovations at the White Mountain Regional High School, and a new career and technical education center at the school.

The $18,073,862 CTE project would only move forward if the district received $13.5 million from the State Career and Technical Education fund. Most of the balance, $4,573,862, would be raised by the district through a bond, with the remaining $87,105 raised from general taxation to pay for the first year of interest on a bond or note. The district will seek to get state building aid for the 25 percent of the project's cost not covered by the state CTE funding.

The projected tax increases from the CTE project in year two for each town are: Dalton - $0.29; Carroll - $0.14; Jefferson - $0.25; Lancaster - $0.33; Whitefield - $0.26.

The proposed renovation project, with a price tag of $6,617,968, will only go forward if the CTE article is passed, and if the 56-percent State Building Aid is secured. Both articles require a three-fifths majority to pass.

The projected tax increases for the renovation project in year two for each town are: Dalton - $0.41; Carroll - $0.20; Jefferson - $0.36; Lancaster - $0.46; Whitefield - $0.38.

The Arthur T. Paradise Career and Technical Education Center at the WMRHS serves about 280 students on a daily basis. Among the programs at the center are culinary arts, welding, animal science, engineering technology and marketing.

There are 24 CTE centers in the state, and funds for renovations are awarded in the order in which the facilities were built. Renovations at the Gallen Center at Littleton High School were completed in 2011.

"The Paradise Center is now at the top of the list. It is our turn to take advantage of this opportunity," the informational packet from the school board reads.

The addition of new space for the center would free up room at the high school. Among the renovations planned for the general education section of the building are an expansion of cafeteria seating, upgrades to the bathrooms, auditorium, library and main office.

The members of the design/build team for the project are Daniel Hebert, Inc., WarrenStreet Architects, Yeaton Associates, Horizons Engineering, TFMoran, RPF Associates and Montagne Communications.

Plans for the projects are available at sau36.org.

smulkern@newstote.com


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