Election season is in full swing. And in addition to this year's primary and general election, voters in the Basehor-Linwood school district will have the opportunity to participate in a special school bond election.

Election season is in full swing. And in addition to this year's primary and general election, voters in the Basehor-Linwood school district will have the opportunity to participate in a special school bond election.

The Basehor-Linwood Board of Education is proposing a bond issue totaling $57.1 million. The bond issue is separated into two parts, both of which will appear on the same ballot.

Mail-in ballots will be used for the election. County Clerk Janet Klasinski said voters in the school district should receive the ballots in the mail around Aug. 17. The ballots have to be returned by noon Sept. 6.

The first ballot question will focus on bond issue projects totaling $51.6 million.

If approved, this portion of the bond issue would pay for the construction of an early childhood education center as well as two new elementary schools in the district. Basehor-Linwood Middle School would receive additional classrooms and a performing arts center. The bond issue also would pay for security improvements to the main entrance of Glenwood Ridge Elementary School as well as other renovations to existing school facilities.

The second ballot question will focus on bond issue projects totaling $5.5 million. If approved, this portion of the bond issue would pay for the construction of a multipurpose building at Basehor-Linwood High School that would include classrooms, a wrestling room and locker rooms. This portion of the bond issue also would pay for the construction of tennis courts and improvements to other athletic facilities including the high school football stadium.

Basehor-Linwood Superintendent David Howard cites growth in the district as a major reason for the school bond election.

He said the district's enrollment is growing between 3 and 3.5 percent each year.

"We know we're going to need the facility space," he said.

Howard said he is confident the proposed bond issue can be enacted without increasing the school district's mill levy. The mill levy is used in determining property taxes.

Howard believes the bond issue will not require a change in the mill levy because of additional tax revenue resulting from increases in property valuation in the school district.

Even if property valuation starts to flatten, board members can reduce the individual mill levy for a capital outlay fund in order to keep the overall levy for the district flat, he said.

Howard said the bond issue was separated into two questions because school officials did not want to tie upgrading the football field with increasing space for elementary schools.

But based on survey results, Howard believes there is support for improving athletic facilities.

"We did see huge support for the athletic facilities," he said.

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