Roland, Vian propositions get overwhelming approval

Editor's Note: Amie Remer contributed to this story.

Patrons of the Roland and Vian school districts showed strong support for their respective schools Tuesday by overwhelmingly approving propositions.

Voters approved two propositions at Roland that totaled over $9 million for an event center and the purchase of two new school buses with cameras.

Proposition 1 at Roland received 384 votes in favor, or 76.34 percent, to 119 “no” votes, or 23.66 percent. Proposition 2 was approved with 385 “yes” votes (76.24 percent) to 120 “no” votes (23.76 percent). Vian voters approved the school's proposition by a vote of 325, “yes,” to 131, “no.”

Roland Schools plan to use $9,040,000 to construct an event center and storm shelter, plus other repairs or additions to the school. The proposed event center is expected to seat about 1,425 people and will be located near the high school. The current gymnasium will remain in use to make more areas available for students and the community for multiple purposes.

The event center will include a tornado shelter rated to F5 tornadoes and will have a capacity of 3,500 people. As part of Proposition 1, there will be roof repairs, two passenger vans, aluminum bleachers at the football stadium and a softball dressing facility.

In case of severe weather, the event center would be opened by school personnel, the Roland Police Department or first responders.

Roland Superintendent Randy Wood said of the election is was a “great turnout with great results.

“I would like to say thank you to all our supporters and all those who voted and worked so hard to get the word out,” Wood said. “I think it's a great investment for our school and community. It will benefit us for years to come.”

Proposition 2 funds of $160,000 will be used to purchase two buses with cameras.

Wood predicted the funds would become available in June and the school would start working toward construction.

Approval of Vian's Proposition will allow the school to construct two buildings, one to house animals away from students and a classroom building. The buildings will include a classroom, storage, metal shop, welding booths, and animal science building/lab and livestock show arena.

Vian Public School Superintendent Victor Salcedo said he couldn't be more excited to see the bond proposition pass.

“I'm not only excited about it passing but I'm also excited for our kids, the Ag students and Ag program, Mr. Trent Trotter (Ag advisor) and our community,” Salcedo said. “We will now be able to provide the resources needed for our classroom and career tech, and a facility that we can all be proud of and use, even for those in the community.”

Salcedo said he also wishes to thank Trotter for having the idea to add the Ag barn so they will be able to host livestock shows. He said it will be accessible to students after school hours, too, and for any other activities.

“The barn will be the extra part we've never had before,” he said. “It will provide the space needed for students to house their animals for showing. A lot of the students don't have a place to house their show animals, so this will be a great thing for so many of the students and parents.

“This new up-to-date facility will be double the size of the current building, increasing the space, ” Salcedo said. “It will also help us to provide more safety for our school and students.”

Salcedo said on behalf of the administration, school board, faculty and staff of the school, he wants to thank those that worked so hard on helping pass the bond.

“We appreciate the support we received and I can't thank them enough,” he said. “We couldn't have passed this bond without them. We made a commitment to the community and we are going to fulfill it.”

Salcedo said the school wouldn't receive any money to begin construction on the new facility until around June or July.

“It will depend on when the bond sales are,” he said. “We are starting the process and doing the correct paperwork so that when we receive the money, we can start as quickly as possible. We have to meet state standards and be approved by the state fire marshal, too.”

Sequoyah County Times

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