On May 7, Macomb Township residents in the New Haven Community Schools district can vote on a $25 million bond proposal to provide funds for remodeling and upgrading New Haven schools and school facilities. Pictured is New Haven High School.

On May 7, Macomb Township residents in the New Haven Community Schools district can vote on a $25 million bond proposal to provide funds for remodeling and upgrading New Haven schools and school facilities. Pictured is New Haven High School.

Photo by Erin Sanchez


May 7 special election scheduled for New Haven Community Schools

District seeking $25 million in upgrades

By: Alex Szwarc | Macomb Township Chronicle | Published April 16, 2019

 At the March 27 Board of Trustees meeting, New Haven Community Schools Superintendent Barbara VanSweden addressed the board, saying she knows how much the Macomb Township community cares about their schools. A special election will be held on May 7 for a bond proposal for New Haven Community Schools.

At the March 27 Board of Trustees meeting, New Haven Community Schools Superintendent Barbara VanSweden addressed the board, saying she knows how much the Macomb Township community cares about their schools. A special election will be held on May 7 for a bond proposal for New Haven Community Schools.

Photo by Alex Szwarc

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MACOMB TOWNSHIP/NEW HAVEN — A small portion of Macomb Township residents can partake in a vote on May 7.

That is when a special election will be held for a New Haven Community Schools bond proposal. The primary purpose of the proposal is to provide funds for remodeling and upgrading New Haven schools and school facilities.

Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Only Macomb Township residents who live in the boundaries of the district can vote in this election. Residents may contact the Macomb Township Clerk’s Office at (586) 992-0710 ext. 3, or visit vote.michigan.gov to see what school district they live in.

The general area of Macomb Township within the district is in the northeastern portion of the township. The boundaries are 26 Mile Road on the north end, and the district extends south to about 21 1/2 Mile Road. The boundary on the east is the Macomb/Chesterfield boundary line, and on the west the district extends just past Luchtman Road to Saint Andrews Drive.

Macomb Township polling locations are the Macomb Township Recreation Center at 20699 Macomb St., Ascension Church at 23401 23 Mile Road, and Bethel Church of the Nazarene at 51850 North Ave.

Ballot language asks if the school district should borrow $25 million and issue its general obligation unlimited tax bonds. The bond proposal projects fall into one of five categories — update instructional technology and technology infrastructure; enhance school security and student safety measures; remodel and upgrade schools and school facilities with emphasis on accommodating 21st century instruction and improving energy efficiency; replace school buses as they reach the end of their useful life; and improve school sites, playgrounds and athletic facilities.

“In 2015, the district completed a facility assessment that looked at the interior and exterior of our schools, parking lots, playgrounds, roofing, electrical, mechanical and more,” New Haven Community Schools Superintendent Barbara VanSweden said. “From the list of needs they developed, a project list was developed and it became clear our buildings needed work.”

A New Haven Community Schools news release states if the bond proposal is approved by voters, the current tax rate is projected to increase by 0.9 mills and cost the average taxpayer within the district an additional $32.40 per year.

At the March 27 Board of Trustees meeting, VanSweden addressed the board during public comments and said she knows how much the Macomb Township community cares about their schools.

“I also know the Macomb Township community cares about safety and security and having an up-to-date learning environment for their children, including technology and infrastructure support,” she said. “I also know the Macomb Township community cares about having safe, reliable transportation for their children.”

Phase 1 would begin in 2019, and phase 2 in 2024.

The estimated millage that will be levied for the proposed bonds in 2019, under current law, is 0.9 mills ($0.90 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation).

“A strong school district helps to promote a strong community and I think we all are interested in making sure our children, now and in the future, have a district that is safe and is preparing kids for the jobs of the 21st century,” VanSweden said.

New for this year is no-reason mail-in voting for all elections.

“It is a convenience that will help many people participate in the election process,” Macomb Township Clerk Kristi Pozzi said. “I’m excited about the potential no-reason mail-in voting has to engage more of our fellow citizens in democracy and encourage our residents to utilize it.”

Voters wishing to receive a mail-in ballot must complete an application by visiting the Macomb Township website, contacting the Clerk’s Office or visiting michigan.gov/vote to download the application.

The Macomb Township Clerk’s Office will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 3 for the deadline for requesting an absent voter ballot by mail. The office will also be open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 4 for the purpose of issuing and receiving absentee voter ballots.

Those qualified to vote by absentee ballot in the special election may vote in person in the Clerk’s Office up to 4 p.m. May 6.

Pozzi said Macomb Township has approximately 61,514 registered voters, and 5,413 of those voters are located in the New Haven School District.

The full text of the ballot proposition may be obtained at www.michigan.gov/vote.

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