Niles schools bond proposal loses by 3,166 votes

Published 10:23 pm Wednesday, March 1, 2006

By By ANDY HAMILTON / Niles Daily Star
NILES - Niles Community Schools will not be seeing a new high school or repairs to existing buildings anytime soon.
The $105 million bond proposal was defeated Tuesday by a vote count of 1,305 to 4,471.
The first votes posted were from precincts three (Niles High School), four (Eastside School) and five (Niles Fire Station).
The precinct with the closest margin between votes was number six, which recorded 295 ‘yes' votes to 524 ‘no' votes. Precinct six was located at the Westside Administration Building.
Voters from precinct two at Howard Township Hall posted more ‘no' votes than any other precinct, with 730 voting ‘no' and 160 punching a ‘yes' vote.
In absentee voting, 171 filed ‘yes' ballots and 550 voted ‘no'.
Supporters and opponents of the bill watched the results unfold in separate parts of the city.
Kathy Zeider waited at Niles City Hall where the barrels of ballots and precinct workers began flooding in after the polls closed at 8 p.m. Final results were posted shorty after 10 p.m.
Zeider, a parent of Niles students and a member of the local group opposing the bond, Save Our Schools, said “the community has spoken” and given its opinion about the 7 mill proposal.
Supporters of the proposal, including the group Citizens for an Educational Legacy Committee and Superintendent of Niles Community Schools Doug Law, gathered in a conference room at Niles Inn.
Law said the school board was disappointed and surprised by the outcome, and, most likely will not re-address the issue any time soon.
Next year's budget and teacher negotiations are now at the top of the agenda, Law said.