Union, Jenks voters approve bond issues
Feb 13, 2013 (Tulsa World - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
Union and Jenks voters handily approved bond issues for their school districts, while Broken Arrow and Liberty voters selected new school board members.
Berryhill voters will need to go back to the polls April 2, since none of its three candidates got half the votes, as required by law.
"It's a night of celebration. We're just thrilled," Union Superintendent Cathy Burden said.
In her 19 years as superintendent, Burden said, Union patrons have approved $354 million in bond issues.
"We continue to have such strong supporters from our community. They want what's best for kids," she said.
On Tuesday, Union voters overwhelmingly approved a $20.4 million bond proposal to expand and remodel the 6th and 7th Grade Center, replace the track at the high school, and buy computers and software required for the state's latest testing mandates. It will also be used to maintain and upgrade facilities, parking lots and technology throughout the district.
Jenks voters also easily passed an $11.5 million bond issue for the purchase of textbooks, school buses, classroom renovations, safety equipment and more.
It was a departure from last year, when voters passed a $10.4 million bond issue with just more than 61 percent of voter approval.
State law requires that at least 60 percent of voters approve bond proposals for them to pass.
"We always have to first thank our patrons, because they understand how needed these funds are to continue the tradition of excellence in Jenks," said school district spokeswoman Bonnie Rogers.
The funds will be used for facility maintenance and equipment, including the purchase of more interactive white boards, copiers, and computer hardware and software.
It will also allow the district to purchase library books, database subscriptions and furnishings for media centers at various schools.
School board elections
In Broken Arrow: Theresa Williamson beat out John Cockrell for the Broken Arrow Office 3 four-year term in a close race. The seat was vacated by Shari Wilkins, who decided not to run for re-election.
Williamson is an eighth-grade counselor at Thoreau Demonstration Academy in Tulsa Public Schools.
In Liberty: Chet Cottom handily defeated Brad Post for the Office 3 five-year term.
Cottom, 50, is employed by RCI Insurance Group in Claremore and graduated from Liberty High School in 1980. He is also serving a third term as president of the Liberty Athletic Booster Club and is vice president of the Liberty Endowment Committee.
In Berryhill: Voters must return to the polls April 2 to select a new school board member for the Office 3 five-year term.
Incumbent Sandra Pirtle and Doc Geiger will be on the ballot, having both received more votes than F. Darren Francisco.
Candidates must get more than half of the votes to win the election. If no candidate does so, the two candidates with the most votes will meet in a runoff.
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