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Voters to consider money issues in August election

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Voters in Barry and Lawrence counties will decide on two school bond and other money-related issues in the Aug. 7 election.

Pierce City residents will vote on making $750,000 in improvements to the water and sewer system. The revenue bonds would cover state-mandated installation of ultra-violet treatment of discharge from the wastewater treatment plant. Other funds would be used to cover operation and maintenance expenses.

Fees from water and sewer charges would cover the expense of the bonds. A simple majority is required for passage.

Patrons in the Marionville R-9 School District will be asked to approve a $1.3 million bond issue. Funds would be used to build a vocational agriculture building to the south of the new high school complex. In addition, funds would be used to build an addition to the high school cafeteria and complete other remodeling and repairs to existing facilities.

Approval of the proposal will require a four-sevenths majority. The district is retiring a bond issue this year. Passage would extend the current debt payments for another five years without requiring a tax increase.

All Lawrence County voters will consider an ordinance authorizing the county commission to take steps to qualify for federal food insurance. According to County Clerk Gary Emerson, the county was only recently mapped for flood hazards, making it possible for the first time for residents and businesses to qualify for flood insurance.

County commissioners could pass regulations to comply with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) standards. Approval would require a simple majority.

Voters in both Barry and McDonald counties in the Southwest R-5 School District will vote for a second time on a $1.5 million bond issue to make school improvements.

The proposition would use bond money to complete safety and security improvements by constructing, equipping and furnishing an administrative office between the elementary and middle school as a central entrance to both campuses. Funds would also be used to equip and furnish a music room addition to the high school and make other repairs and renovations.

Voters in April supported the initiative with 53 percent of the vote, but it fell short of the needed four-sevenths majority by 18 votes. Like Marionville, passage would result in no tax increase to patrons.

State legislators have proposed an amendment to the Missouri Constitution that is expected to bear little or no cost to the state.

The amendment would declare that "the right of Missouri citizens to express their religious beliefs shall not be infringed." School children would have the right "to pray and acknowledge God voluntarily in their schools." All public schools would be directed to display the Bill of Rights from the United States Constitution.

Passage would require a simple majority.

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