Statement from Mayor Rob Rolison on School District’s Capital Improvement Project
Those familiar with the Poughkeepsie City School District recognize there are compelling needs to make major renovations to our aging schools — to ensure our children have a 21st century learning environment.
Superintendent Dr. Eric Jay Rosser has put forth such plans. He is offering voters options and, significantly, these initiatives come with highly favorable state reimbursement rates. As co-chair of the Poughkeepsie Children’s Cabinet, I urge voters to consider these plans carefully and to support the district’s Capital Improvement Project. The vote takes place from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, October 20.
Under one scenario, Proposition 1, voters could approve $48,250,000 for major infrastructure, safety and security improvements. New security entrances, roof restorations or replacements, lavatory renovations and other upgrades would be a part of this project. Each school building would see improvements. 91.2 percent of aidable portions of this project will be reimbursed by the state, an extremely high statewide reimbursement rate for school capital improvement projects. The total percent of the project that qualifies for New York State aid is 95 percent.
Under another scenario, Proposition 2, voters could approve $98,791,306 in spending, which would include all of the major infrastructure, safety and security improvements of Proposition 1 and also major renovations throughout all schools. The additional major renovations will have a significant impact on the district’s ability to enhance and align the instructional program to emerging industry and occupational fields in the Hudson Valley.
This proposition, which requires a supermajority vote has the same highly favorable state reimbursement rate of 91.2 percent. 70 percent of the project qualifies for such aid.
Earlier this year, Dr. Rosser and I created the Poughkeepsie Children’s Cabinet designed to shepherd a shared vision and cradle-to-career path for child development in the city. I have worked closely with Dr. Rosser since his arrival to the school district last year and know he has both the best interests of the school and community at large in mind. I urge people to learn more about the capital plan, including polling locations, at the district’s webpage, https://www.poughkeepsieschools.org/, and come forward to back the district in this endeavor.