Provo school bond passes/doesn't pass 02

A sign against a Provo school bond hangs askew during Election Day on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019, in Provo. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

The Provo City School District’s $245 million bond continues to appear to fail, hovering between 62.99% and 63.14 of votes against the measure as more and more votes are counted, according to election results posted just after midnight Wednesday.

Tuesday night’s unofficial results showed that 63% of 12,499 counted votes were cast against the measure. Wednesday morning, 62.99% of 14,698 counted votes, were against it. And Wednesday afternoon, the percentage of votes against the measure jumped up to its highest number yes at 63.14% out of 15,029 votes.

“Thank you to the citizens of Provo who have supported the district throughout this process and voted in favor of this bond,” the Provo City School District said in a written statement Tuesday night. “While not a final count, we recognize that the results are not promising. While the bond may not pass, the issues at each of the schools are not going to improve or change without significant work. Assuming the results hold, we will regroup and begin to look at what steps must be taken next to address these issues.”

If passed, the bond would include a $145 million rebuild of Timpview High School, except for the Thunderdome, a $55 million relocation and rebuild of Dixon Middle School on Provo’s west side, a $30 million rebuild of Wasatch Elementary School, a $10 million addition at Westridge Elementary School and $5 million for security upgrades.

The bond appeared on the ballot years earlier than the district anticipated after deteriorating conditions at Timpview High School caused the soil underneath part of the school to settle and a piece of the masonry to fall through the media center’s ceiling tiles. Cracks also continue to appear in the school’s walls.

The effect of the bond’s passage would vary over the next few years on the average $270,000 home in Provo. Property taxes would go down by $21.12 in 2020, would increase by $11.44 in 2021, would increase by $63.95 in 2022, would increase by $36.85 in 2023, would increase by $41.83 in 2024, would increase by $85.51 in 2025 and would increase by $25.19 in 2026, leading to a total increase of $264.77 in property taxes over that time period that can be attributed to the bond. After 2026, taxes attributed to the bond will go down as principal is paid off.

If passed, the bond was expected to be paid off in 20 years.

“We are happy to hear that the Provo School Bond was defeated this election,” the No On Provo School Bond PIC said in a written statement Tuesday night. “We offer a heartfelt thanks to the many people who have volunteered, donated and otherwise engaged in the political process, no matter how they voted. We hope that the issues many have with this bond proposal can be addressed when the board decides to bond again. We look forward to continuing to work with the school board to achieve the best outcome for our community.”

This story is developing and more will be added as it is made available.