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Political group mulls over factors of bond

The East Lincoln Political Action Committee is cautiously supporting the $47 million upcoming school bond referendum.
“It’s between a rock and a hard place,” said Judy Browne, chairwoman and organizer. “Our concerns are the control of the costs.”
Browne said the committee supports the schools and knows the bond is necessary, but they say there are still many unanswered questions.
“I want to know if the $47 million covers the maintenance, because we do not see a number for this,” she said.
Browne also said she wants to make sure the money is spread across the whole county and not just used on one end.
If approved, the bond referendum will assist in building new schools and renovating outdated school facilities in Lincoln County.
Lincoln County schools opened this year with more than 11,300 students. The county projects more than 13,000 students in schools by 2008.
The bond referendum is said to be the least expensive alternative for the county and taxpayers.
Defeat of the bond issue will not reduce the number of students coming to Lincoln County or costs associated with housing and educating the students, ELPAC stated.
The committee is concerned with cost overruns similar to those experienced with the building of the new North Lincoln High School from 2001-2003.
Although supporting the referendum, ELPAC would like to see an independent overseer or administrator of bond funds appointed by the school board. They would be accountable for the distribution of money.
ELPAC hopes the bond referendum will first start with priority needs.
A decision will be made on the bond referendum May 4. Polls will be open during the primary from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Information on the voting precincts and polling places is available from the Lincoln County Board of Elections, 115 W. Main St., Lincolnton or by calling 704-736-8480. by Amy Wadsworth

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