The Hauppauge community came together this week to vote on a bond referendum intended to revitalize and improve instructional areas, athletic facilities, and the infrastructure of different buildings in the district. The $58.2 million initiative was passed in an 807-278 vote – nearly a 75%-25% split. The proposition will raise school property taxes by $15 per year for every $100,000 in home value.
The result of the vote has come with many celebrations as most of the advancements proposed are extremely necessary and vital to the education of students. These advancements include renovation of the science research room, fitness center, television studio, and pre-production classrooms in the high school, as well as the expansion and renovation of the outdoor courtyard and learning centers of both the middle and high school.
The high school, which is over seventy years old, will receive majority of the spending in athletic updates including resurface of track and field event spaces, construction of two multi-purpose turf fields, reconstruction, and expansion of the tennis courts to include pickleball lines, construction of a dek hockey rink, additional parking, upgrade in pool filtration systems.
The voter-approved spending will also allow for much needed field access improvements, including a new pedestrian entrance, vehicle access road, and ADA-accessible paths to all high school facilities. These improvements and additions will allow for students and families with disabilities to enter and participate safely in all activities the high school hosts.
“This is a great night for the students, their families, and the entire Hauppauge community,” said school-board President David Barshay, in a statement released as supporters celebrated the win at the district’s Whiporwil headquarters.
The middle school will also receive some much-needed renovations and improvements in their athletic courts, track and field areas, and ADA-approved walking loop path to all middle school facilities. The construction of an outdoor bathroom building will also aid in the array of outdoor sports hosted on the middle school fields.
This bond referendum was announced in October, enlisting excitement by the community through public meetings held between October 19 and November 29. PTA members and other community groups came together to ensure public knowledge and answer questions.
“Our district continues to focus on the success of all of our students as we work to achieve our mission of helping today’s learners become tomorrow’s leaders,” said Superintendent of School Donald Murphy in a statement.
School bonds are used with the intention of spreading costs over an extended period of time, preventing the annual tax impact on the community from increasing exponentially at one time, also minimizing the use of NYS Building Aid.
“The school district pays off its bonds on average in 15-20 years. The retiring debt presents an optimal opportunity for this project to be considered,” said Hauppauge School District in a statement sent out to the public. “The bond would cost approximately $15/year for every $100,000 in home value based on current tax and equalization rates.”
In an online statement, Superintendent Don Murphy said:
“The proposed $58.2 million District Bond Referendum was approved with an impressive 74% of majority vote! We now turn our attention to the work ahead, with a goal of updating the community on our progress through each phase of the bond project over the next three years. Please stay tuned for ParentSquare messages and look for additional information on our dedicated website: https://tinyurl.com/HauppaugeBond. Within the site, you will also find a list of our bond subcommittee members who have volunteered to support the district in the days ahead. We are most grateful for their time and vested interest in this comprehensive district-wide improvement plan. Once again, a most sincere ‘Thank you!’ to the Hauppauge community for your unwavering support as we strive to improve our incredible school district so that our students may thrive and reach their full potential.”