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Local

Thake: Sales tax money needed

District’s biggest needs at junior high, schools’ superintendent says

AMBOY – The Amboy school district could use the money from a proposed 1 percent sales tax for education, its superintendent says.

On Nov. 6, Lee County voters will decide on the 1 percent tax, which would be divided among the county’s public school districts based on enrollment.

In a resolution, the Dixon school board said it would use its share of the money for a proposed sports and activities complex. A local group has launched a campaign in support of the tax.

Dixon would get an estimated $1.3 million a year from the tax. Amboy, the county’s second largest district, would pull in $452,000.

“In other counties, the passage of the 1 percent tax has led to the lowering of property taxes,” Amboy Superintendent Jeff Thake said in a statement. “This has been accomplished when the school districts used these funds to pay off existing bonds.”

According to Thake:

The district could use improvements at its three schools, with the most significant needs at Amboy Junior High, where the district wants to install a new roof, estimated to cost $500,000.

Amboy High School needs 40 percent of its roof replaced, costing an additional $150,000.

Also at the high school, the cafeteria is out of compliance with state codes because its existing fire doors are obsolete.

At Central Elementary School, the district recently replaced the roof. Officials have been monitoring the heating system under the floor, which would eventually cost $350,000.

“Throughout the district, our windows are not very energy-efficient,” Thake said. “Our heating bills continue to increase due to the existing windows. This districtwide project could cost $500,000.”

Call the district office at 815-857-2164 for more information.

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