The Hayfield School Board unanimously approved going to the public with a school bond referendum last spring.

Today is the day for the vote.

There are two questions on the ballot and voting takes place from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. with one polling place.  The Hayfield school east lobby.

In April 2017 the Minnesota Department of Education awarded Hayfield a Qualify Zone Academy Bond (QZAB) in the amount of 9.7 million dollars.

This is a National Education Department program and Hayfield was the only school in Minnesota to receive the approval for the bond after they submitted the necessary paperwork.

This money will have to be paid back, but interest free over 20 years.

That money is being used to replace some outdated infrastructure to the Hayfield Elementary and High School buildings.

The school board then decided to go to the public and request an additional 14.3 million dollars to make other badly needed upgrades.

Those upgrades were determined by a professional assessment according to the Hayfield School District informational website.

Question 1 is for 10 million dollars to "revitalize facility infrastructure and improve learning environments."   This would including replacing the 57 year old high school boilers and renovate the elementary building.

According to the informational website it would cost $800,000 dollars to replace the boilers.

Question 2 is for 4.3 million for upgrades in "Safety and security" and "Enhanced student activites and community spaces."

This includes more secure entries to buildings, a 3,220 square foot addition to the high school cafeteria, resurfacing the track and upgrading the indoor concessions area at the high school.

If question one fails then the whole vote goes down even if people vote in favor of question two.

If question one passes and question two fails then the school district would move forward with the bonding for the items listed for expenditure in question one.

The professional assessment referred to earlier found 2/3 of the infrastructure in Hayfield school needs upgrade.

When asked why the board didn't just decide to build a new facility the board states it was considered but the building alone would be between 40 and 50 million dollars and that doesn't include land acquisition because it couldn't be built on the present site.

According to their informational website if the bond referendum requests are approved the projects would be completed by late 2019..

You might recall the school board voted last year to close the Brownsdale elementary school and many of their residents have voiced their displeasure to the board for that decision.

We'll have the results for you if the vote total is completed Monday night.

Hayfield Bond Vote Sign. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld