Eastpointe Community Schools has placed a $36.4 million bond proposal on the Aug. 8 ballot. If the bond passes, it will generate funds for building improvements across the district, including at Eastpointe High School.

Eastpointe Community Schools has placed a $36.4 million bond proposal on the Aug. 8 ballot. If the bond passes, it will generate funds for building improvements across the district, including at Eastpointe High School.

File photo by Erin Sanchez

Eastpointe Community Schools bond proposal on Aug. 8 ballot

By: Maria Allard | Roseville-Eastpointe Eastsider | Published July 21, 2023


EASTPOINTE — During the primary election Aug. 8, Eastpointe Community Schools residents will decide whether to support a bond proposal.

School officials have placed a $36.4 million bond proposal on the ballot. According to school officials, if the bond initiative passes, it will extend the current tax rate for the entirety of the bond and will not require any tax rate increase to complete the projects.

“Our promise to our taxpayers is no more than 3.5 mills being levied,” district Superintendent Christina Gibson said. “What I have heard from members of the community is that they’re supportive of the work we’re already doing to improve the schools. I’ve had a lot of (people call) to get clarification on the bond, which I value and appreciate.”

A bond proposal is developed by the school district and presented to the voters. When a bond proposal passes, the bonds are sold in the capital markets at a date determined by the district, a financial adviser and an underwriter. Upon closing, funds generated from the bond sale are deposited in the district’s construction fund and are available to spend for completion of the projects contemplated in the bond proposal.

If Eastpointe’s bond passes, it will generate funding to pay for improvements to school facilities across the district. The bond proposal is part one of an overall plan to address student needs at every grade level. This bond is replacing maturing bond debt.

If the bond proposal passes, Gibson said, “some of the (construction) work will start in the summer of 2024.”

There are nine buildings in the district, including four elementary schools, Eastpointe Middle School, Eastpointe High School, the Early Learning Center, the Alternative Center, and the operations and transportation building.

Proposed projects include safety and security improvements, learning environment enhancements, facility upgrades and technology updates. They include everything from roofing to heating and cooling to playgrounds.

“The big one is getting air conditioning in our schools, redoing our playgrounds for the kids and community, improving traffic flow for parents during pickup and drop-off at our schools, and securing entrances at the high school and middle schools,” Gibson said.

Eastpointe High School — built in 1929 — for example, would receive $10 million in project improvements should the bond proposal pass. That includes the creation of a secure entry vestibule, upgraded security cameras and exterior lighting, resurfacing of the track, renovations of the culinary arts space, and much more.

Another example is Pleasantview Elementary School, which was built in 1960 and houses third through fifth grade students. If the voters approve the bond, a total of $5.11 million would be allocated to Pleasantview for a list of projects, including a bus lane and the replacement of student and staff computing devices.

The district’s architects are Partners in Architecture, in Mount Clemens, and the construction manager is Barton Malow, in Southfield. If voters approve the proposal, the $36.4 million bond will be for 25 years.

Eastpointe voters last approved a bond issue in 2009. The bond was for $23 million, and it focused on needs at the secondary level.

“The old bond will bring the levy to the new bond. That’s how we can do the zero mills,” Gibson said. “We’re excited to continue rebuilding pride in our public education system.”

The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Aug. 8. Residents can vote by absentee ballot through Aug. 8. To obtain an absentee ballot application, visit michigan.gov/vote and click on “absentee voting” in the left column.

Information about the proposal is available at eastpointeschools.org/bond-election-info. Questions about the bond can be directed to Gibson by emailing christina.gibson@eastpointeschools.org.