I am writing in support of Measure 10-163, a bond measure to support the Sutherlin School District. The bond would replace West Intermediate School and East Primary School with a new school on existing district property. A new gym would be built on the east school property and the sixth grade would join the seventh and eighth grades there to form a true middle school. At the high school, seismic and other security issues could be addressed.

If the measure passes, property owners will pay a total of $2.78 per $1,000 of assessed property value. A $150,000 home would cost an additional $320 per year.

The bond would allow the district to provide a safer educational environment for all students. West intermediate's location leaves students vulnerable. Classrooms at west are accessed from individual outside doors. This makes for a dangerous setup in today's unpredictable world. In addition, the topography at west and the aged building leaves students at risk during a seismic event. ADA requirements force the district to spend one third of any renovation project dollars on ADA accessibility. West can not meet current ADA requirements, even with extensive renovation.

The district has received notice that the state will award it a $4 million matching grant if the bond passes on the May ballot. It is time for the citizens of our community to step up to support safe schools in our district. All students deserve to know that everything has been done to provide them with a safe place to learn. Vote "Yes: on Measure 10-163.

Marty Gary


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