Farmington school construction project could raise taxes

A plan to renovate Farmington High School is in the hands of voters. (Farmington Schools photo)

Taxes could be on the rise in Farmington if voters approve a major construction project for the town's high school.

A special referendum is underway on Thursday to rebuild Farmington High School.

“We moved to Farmington because of the schools," said Glenn Gibbons. "I want my kids to have the best schools.”

Farmington schools have been ranked as some of the best in the state by various reports.

“If it means for us to pay a little bit more for taxes, I’m happy to do that because I think education is really important," Gibbons said.

Polls opened at 6 a.m.

“Love the kids in the town and that’s important but we also have to be fiscally responsible," said Stephanie Duchesneau of Farmington.

The project has a price tag of $135 million.

“It’s been pretty contentious so I thought it was important to come out and vote,” Duchesneau said.

It's a bottom line that's become a heated debate in town.

"I think it’s too much money," said Simona Trofimov of Farmington. “It’s just wasting money. To me, it’s just short-termed planning. They don’t think too far ahead, they just build something and they’re not happy and they spend more money and build something else.”

The plan calls for knocking down the existing high school and building new one in its place on the same plot of land.

"I think in the long run, this will be the cheapest option in the long run for Farmington," said Johnny Carrier of Farmington.

The original 1928 building and a portion of the school's "900" wing would remain intact.

The plan would also expand and renovate some of the athletic fields and improve traffic flow around the school by adding two lanes to both directions of Monteith Drive.

The process of looking into the renovation started months ago. The public was able to express its opinion.

Officials said the Town Council already approved the project, which paved the way for Thursday's referendum.

If approved by voters, construction would likely start next year and finish in the fall of 2022.

Polls close at 8 p.m.

Voters can head to their regular polling place.

Copyright 2017 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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