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Arlington School Board members on June 25 voted 5-0 to petition County Board members and the Circuit Court for placement of a $52.7 million school bond on the Nov. 3 ballot.

The total dollar amount is significantly reduced from what would have been expected prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused the county government and school system budgets to be slashed in the short term.

The bulk of the funding being sought by the School Board would go to support design of new projects and completion of existing infrastructure projects. There also would be funds included for kitchen renovations and building refreshes at a number of schools, as well as entrance renovations at a number of facilities.

The school-bond package is expected to share the Nov. 3 ballot with a number of county-government bonds that are being proposed to be sent to voters. County Board members will make a final determination at their July board meeting and then petition the Circuit Court to have the package placed on the ballot.

Arlington voters have not turned down a local bond referendum since 1979, and most years, school bonds score the largest percentage of votes in favor.

Ordinarily, local bond referendums go to voters during the general elections in even-numbered years. Because both the county government and school system have significantly reduced their 2020 packages from pre-COVID expectations, it is anticipated that additional referendums also will be held in the fall of 2021 before the process resumes its traditional even-year cycle in 2022.

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