OGDEN — Ogden School District's $106.5 million school construction bond was narrowly defeated, according to the latest election results released Thursday by the Weber County Clerk's Office.
Fifty-one percent voted against the question while 48.62 percent voted for the bond, which would have been used to replace the gymnasium at Ben Lomond High School, replace three elementary schools and develop "professional gateway centers" at Highland and Mount Ogden junior high schools.
Ogden School District spokesman Jer Bates said the school board and school district expressed gratitude to Ogden residents who voted on the bond initiative.
"Regardless of how you voted, the fact that you voted shows that you are willing to take an active role in the education of Ogden children" he said.
The Ogden Board of Education and district administrators asked patrons for their continued involvement "as we move forward in the effort to provide the best education possible through both evolving teaching practices and improved learning spaces."
Bates said the school board will determine "whether to pursue another bond initiative and when."
"Should the board choose to pursue another bond initiative in the next year or soon thereafter, I would expect that we will have an even greater desire from the public to participate in formulating the bond plan," Bates said.
The school district has identified 14 schools in need of renovation or replacement, including nine elementary schools built in the 1950s or earlier, and three junior highs built between 1959 and 1975, according to the bond initiative website.
Of six school bond questions from Utah school districts that asked voter authorization to borrow for a combined $800 million, two were rejected.
Voters in the South Summit School District voted down a $58.65 million bond, primarily to rebuild South Summit High School in Kamas at a cost of $57 million. The rest of the bond was to be used to repair existing buildings.
The bond would have raised property taxes by about $96 per year per $100,000 of taxable value on a single-family home and $174 per year per $100,000 for a business property.
It was the only school bond on Utah election ballots this fall that was endorsed by the Utah Taxpayers Association.
Meanwhile, voters in Canyons, Granite, Weber County and Morgan school districts approved bond issues ranging from Canyons School District's $283 million to Morgan School District's $49 million.