Darrington Elementary School (Darrington School District)

Darrington Elementary School (Darrington School District)

Darrington schools levy asks for new roof, safety equipment

It would replace a bond that’s about to expire. Property owners would pay the same amount in taxes.

DARRINGTON — The high school here needs a new heating system to get through the snowy Darrington winters.

Voters can decide on this and other projects in the district during the April 23 special election.

Ballots for the capital projects levy include safety, security and facility improvements at Darrington schools. Around 400 students attend the two schools in the district.

The new tax would replace a bond that paid for the high school remodel 20 years ago.

“In essence, what we are asking voters to do is maintain the same level of support,” Superintendent Buck Marsh said.

Property owners would pay the same amount they have been for the past two decades, he said.

The measure asks for about 75 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value for four years. If approved, the levy would bring in $350,000 annually, for a total of $1.4 million when it expires.

The elementary school’s shingle roof is at the end of its life. It’s been patched over the years to stop leaks.

The proposal would pay for a new metal roof that’s expected to last longer.

At this point the high school heating system is not working properly. Parts of the building are cooler than others at times.

“The HVAC is not only needed, but also ties into our long-term goal of making our buildings energy efficient,” Marsh said.

New fire alarms also would be installed. The company that made the current alert systems has gone out of business, and there is no way to get replacement parts.

The district may use levy money to buy surveillance equipment, as well. A couple of years ago, both of the Darrington schools were broken into. The vandals caused about $500,000 worth of damage.

“We just want to make our schools safer,” Marsh said.

The district passed a levy last year that included funding for music, art and language programs, field trips and staff training.

Stephanie Davey: 425-339-3192; sdavey@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @stephrdavey.

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