Built in 1928, the Pelican Rapids High School, will not be renovated any time soonPelican Rapids, MN (WDAY TV) -- Pelican Rapids High School, originally built in 1928 will not be renovated any time soon.
Pelican Rapids, MN (WDAY TV) -- Pelican Rapids High School, originally built in 1928 will not be renovated any time soon.
Voters defeated an 18-point-5 million dollar upgrade to the building.
The auditorium, being a 1928, and there really should be no argument that that has to be upgraded, not many people drive around in a 1928 car anymore.
District Maintenance Engineer Trevor Steeves has worked in these halls for 20 years. He's seen the wear and tear of the building that's well past it's prime.
Trevor: "The question isn't new, and or repair and replace, but there is not an option of doing nothing."
The No vote is seen as a road block. Steeves says making decisions on what to upgrade and what not to is difficult when they don't know the future of the building. Take these new cameras. They don't want to spend precious budget money if eventually they will have to be torn down.
Trevor: "That money gets spread out pretty thin which you know you are throwing dimes at dollar projects."
Deb: "We need to regroup."
1,262 people or 59 percent voted no and 845, or 40 percent voted yes. Superintendent Deborah Wanek says the need of a new science lab, a commons area with more space for students to eat, and a fine arts auditorium won't go away.
Deb: "We need to step back, reevaluate, and see what's next."
One of Wanek's main concerns is the safety of her students. Right Now they have to cross a busy two lane road to even get into the school. If the bond would have went through a new secure entrance would have been added right here.
Deb: "The road itself has been here forever and our school is right next to this highway so the drop off is really a big piece."
So what's next... The school board will meet on Tuesday. It'll talk about options to make changes to the original plan, find out what people want, and what it will take to eventually get a yes vote.
A mailer sent out by a NO vote committee had the cost the homeowner would pay over the 20 years, rather then the annual rate. Wanek said that could have swayed voters.