ELLENBURG DEPOT - They're giving it another go.
After Northern Adirondack Central School's capital improvement project was voted down in December, the Facilities Planning Committee went back to the drawing board.
"We're at a point in time where the work needs to be done," said superintendent Laura J.Marlow. She explained the school is in a "crisis situation" in terms of their heating and plumbing, and is in need of other improvements such as technology and security.
The next vote will be held this Monday, March 22, from 12-8 p.m. Polling places are Altona Town Hall, 3124 Miner Farm Road; Churubusco Town Hall, 23 Smith St., NAC Middle-High School, 5586 Route 11; and Lyon Mountain Fire Station, 9 Fire House Road.
The ballot will contain two proposals - Proposition 1 and Proposition 2.
For Proposition 1, the original project was scaled back from $35.9 million to $7.9 million, which will be at no cost to taxpayers.
"Proposition 1, of course, is dealing with all the infrastructure work, the technology, the security, all the health and safety issues," explained Marlow.
"This project is not normal maintenance," she added. "The things that need to be done are really at the end of their physical life. The beauty of it is this will be covered entirely by state building aid and EXCEL aid."
However, Proposition 2 will add a multipurpose gym, concession stand, and field-accessible toilets, which will be a small tax increase for taxpayers, and an added $1,911,000 to Proposition 1 renovations.
Proposition 1 must past, in order for Proposition 2 to go through, which would have a slight impact on taxpayers.
For a $75,000 home, the tax increase equates to $19.08 annually for STAR Exemption.
"What [Proposition 2] does is a lot of our students are staying very late to get gym space for practicing and such," Marlow explained. "That would have a minimal tax impact."
Marlow understands why some taxpayers are skeptic of the project.
"I was always brought up where there's no such thing as a free lunch," she said. "I think that people are saying to themselves, 'How can there possibly be free money, or money out there, to do this? Especially when we know what's happening in Albany, when we know the economic situation in the state of New York,' and my response to that is ... aid is out there because the state wants us to be able to continually maintain our school buildings."
Marlow further explained the state would rather see buildings maintained, instead of crumbing down and in a position where they need to be completely rebuilt.
"It really is in the state's best interest to continue to provide this money to maintain the schools," she said. "If our school doesn't use it, then other schools in New York State will use it. We're all New York State taxpayers, so my feeling is that I would like to see us be able to use the money for the students in our district."
If Proposition 1 does not go through, the money from the school's budget would have to be used to fix some of the immediate problems.
"Hopefully, we won't have to go that route," said Marlow.
For more information on the EXCEL Capital Improvement Project, visit www.nacs1.org/district/EXCELproject.html.