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Letter: Vote 'yes' for the students

There is a legitimate reason the Menahga School Board members are once again asking for a vote on a bond proposal. In the Code of Ethics policy it states, "in meeting my responsibilities to my community, I will attempt to appraise both present and future educational needs of the school district." The appraisal has been made, but no adequate building project has been completed to meet the basic needs of our students.

For more than 10 years we have needed additional facilities. This is a concern of former and present board members, administrators, as well as building, advisory and strategic committees. In 2000 a special election for a bond proposal was defeated. It included adding needed classrooms and physical education facilities. The issue has continued to be discussed.

Minnesota's open enrollment law 124D.03 Subd. 3 enacted in 1990 states that "once enrolled in a nonresident district the pupil will remain enrolled and is not required to submit annual or periodic applications" so once enrolled a student may stay until they graduate. The students are not only a substantial financial help, but also allow us to provide a more extensive curriculum. Even if we didn't have open enrollment, we would still need added facilities. Because of increasing enrollment our needs are greater. This increase is not just because of open enrollment. Our district remains a vital, growing community.

Fortunately, we qualify for a federal program that will easily save us in excess of $1 million over the term of the loan. The federal interest free Qualified School Construction Bonds law offers us a great opportunity, which will no longer be available after September of 2010. Our proposal gets our students out of basements and closets. It also meets our ADA requirements. The small increase in taxes necessary to help us provide a good education to the students of today and tomorrow is a good investment.

To the best of my knowledge the information in this article and the recent information sent to voters is factual and without distortion. Please carefully consider the merits of the Aug. 10, 2010 bond proposal.

Curtis Hasbargen

Menahga School Board treasurer