Highland school bond failing for second time

COWICHE, Wash. -- Twelve votes: That's how many votes the Highland School District's bond measure is short of passing. It's the district's second try at the bond. It failed by a similarly tight margin in February.

Crystal Greable has two kids who go to Highland Junior High School. She supports the bond that would pay to renovate and build new facilities for Highland schools, but she knows a lot of people don't agree with her.

"They read it saying their property taxes are going up, and no one wants it to go up, because we're all pinching for our money right now," said Crystal.

KIMA spoke with a few people who voted against the bond who didn't want to speak on camera. They agreed money was the issue.

The $8.5 million bond needs a 60 percent supermajority to pass. Wednesday's election results show the bond is 12 votes shy of passing.

"That's a pretty small margin for it not to pass; I think it's doable," said Rachel Voss.

The bond would help pay for security and electrical improvements at the elementary school. It would also upgrade the junior and senior high schools' heating and air conditioning systems. A vo-tech building is also proposed.

"Even if they don't have any kids, they got to think of the future for the other kids," said Lilli Mclean.

Crystal said she didn't see a lot of campaigning to support the bond.

"If they're really trying to push for this, then you'd think they would be out there and sending out letters and stuff with the kids, information on everything, and I hardly got anything," said Crystal.

Jim Polley said he voted against the bond in February, but changed his mind this time.

"My conscience I think was the main issue with me," said Jim. "They've been trying and trying to no avail."

KIMA reached out to Highland's superintendent, but our calls were not returned.

The bond is certainly not decided with more votes delivered in the coming days.

Turnout is already higher for the special election. The number of ballots returned is up by more than a hundred from February.

Results will be certified May 6.