By Larry Austin
Island Dispatch Editor
The Grand Island Board of Education will hear a presentation concerning a possible capital project at its Aug. 27 meeting.
If the board approves, this would be the first capital project vote the community has been presented since December 2011, when voters said yes to a $50 million project. Superintendent of Schools Brian Graham didn't have a cost estimate, but he said a project under review now is much smaller.
Graham told the board of trustees during a meeting Monday in the Professional Development Room of Grand Island High School that after a facility committee was formed in March, several proposed capital improvements became apparent:
•New, more secure, redesigned entrances at both the high school and middle school.
•Roofs at Kaegebein and Sidway elementary schools.
•Air conditioning in the high school cafeteria and library.
•Water in the high school/middle school music wing, for fountains and bathrooms.
•Enhanced acoustics and a sound booth in the Grand Viking Theater.
•Turf athletic fields, including baseball and softball diamonds.
In Other News
The board voted unanimously to certify a school tax rate that is lower than the rate approved by voters in the annual school budget referendum in May.
In a memo to the board, Richard Hitzges, interim assistant superintendent of school business and finance, said a tax levy of $33,463,153 was approved by the voters in May and estimated assessment data was used to predict a tax rate of $19.572101.
"Based upon the Grand Island assessor's assessment amount of $1,728,408,178, the district's tax rate (per $1,000 of assessed value) will be $19.360677. This rate is lower than the estimated 2018-19 amount by 21 cents per $1,000 of assessed value, or 1.08 percent. This tax rate is 0.014458 lower than the 2017-18 actual rate of $19.375135."