Canadian Valley Technology Center proposes bond issue to rebuild from May 31 tornado

Voters in the Canadian Valley Technology Center district will consider a $12 million bond issue that would go to rebuild the center’s El Reno campus, which was destroyed by the May 31 tornado that struck Canadian County. The race is one of several around the metro area that will be decided Tuesday.
by Jane Glenn Cannon and Silas Allen Published: March 27, 2014

Voters in the Canadian Valley Technology Center district will consider a $12 million bond issue that would go to rebuild the center’s campus here, which was destroyed by a tornado May 31.

This is one of several elections around the metro area Tuesday.

The tornado left the campus too badly damaged to be used, forcing the center to hold its August classes at its Cowan Campus, just north of Mustang. The center also held classes in a former car dealership. Most of the El Reno campus was bulldozed.

Officials at the center said the insurance settlement didn’t cover the cost of safe rooms or other improvements needed to rebuild the campus. Officials estimated the bond issue would raise property taxes less than $1 per month on a $100,000 home.

In other elections

Norman voters will decide whether a temporary half-cent public safety sales tax that expires next year should be made into a permanent tax.

If approved, the tax would continue to pay salaries and benefits for 41 police officers and 30 firefighters hired with money generated by the seven-year temporary half-cent tax initiated after voter approval in 2008.

Additionally, the continued revenue would be used to replace an outdated radio system that serves police, fire and ambulance services, hire four new dispatchers to help with the updated system and move Fire Station No. 5 near Little Axe to a location that better serves Little Axe and rural east Norman.

The new money also would be spent on a school resource officer program, which would place a police officer inside every school in the district. A stipulation of instituting the school program is that the Norman School District commit to sharing the cost of such a plan.

Three ward races will also be on the ballot in Norman. In Ward 2, Gary Caissie, 53, Aleisha Karjala, 39, Matthew Leal, 31, and Clint Williams, 33, are vying for the seat being vacated by Tom Kovach.

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