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Ennis Schools $59M bond fails

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GRAPHIC BY ME BROWN

EBS STAFF

BIG SKY – Ennis School District voters this week turned down a $59 million bond proposed by the district. The third largest bond ever proposed in the state of Montana, the measure would have supported an ambitious expansion of the Ennis school facilities including a new building, new gym and improvements to the existing junior high school wing.

The issue was voted down by nearly 60 percent of the Ennis School District electorate which includes Madison County residents in Ennis, Virginia City and Big Sky. The Madison County Election Office reported an approximately 53 percent return rate on the 3,571 ballots issued in the Feb. 8 mail-in election.

According to Ennis Schools Superintendent Casey Klasna, the 51-year-old high school building does not meet space and infrastructure needs, is not handicapped accessible and is not compliant with current building code. The district’s concern, he said in a Jan. 4 interview, is that growth will outpace the existing facility, which is already overcrowded.

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