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Plainview-Old Bethpage holds $49.8 million school bond vote Tuesday

Voters in the Plainview-Old Bethpage school district will cast ballots Tuesday to decide whether to approve a nearly $50-million bond issue, with the money to be used for what administrators said are much-needed energy efficiencies and security improvements.

Residents can vote from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Old Bethpage Elementary School, Plainview-Old Bethpage Middle School and Jamaica Avenue School.

The funds, which amount to $49,816,257, are earmarked for a wide range of repairs and upgrades to the district's buildings, from windows, doors, ceilings and roofs to enhancements of technology and security systems.

Some of the top priority proposals are improvements in lighting, cameras, motion detection, fire alarm systems, exterior and interior doors, accessibility projects, roof replacement, air conditioning, heating and ventilation, science labs, art rooms, bathrooms and masonry reconstruction, the district said.

"We are investing heavily in the future, as evidenced by our impending bond referendum," Superintendent Lorna R. Lewis wrote in the district's newsletter. "The vote . . . is to allow us to fund a myriad of well-needed facility and classroom upgrades -- improvements that will have numerous benefits for our students and the community."

Administrators said that the cost of the 20-year bond for a home assessed at the average of $985 will be $196 per year. Some of the bond costs will be covered by state aid, administrators said.

The improvements are slated to begin by the end of this year and be completed by the summer of 2017.

Voters must be United States citizens who are 18 or older and have been residents of the district for at least 30 days prior to the vote, officials said.

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