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Goodhue's 'Big Ask' gets rejected

The Goodhue Lions Club had people waiting out the door to vote on the Goodhue Bond Referendum May 8, 2018. Residents were considering a $30 million referendum vote for the Goodhue School District to help address facility needs. Matthew Lambert / RiverTown Multimedia

GOODHUE — Voters in the Goodhue School District rejected Tuesday a long-planned $30 million referendum that would go toward overall school improvements. The referendum failed by a vote of 500-449.

Goodhue Superintendent Mike Redmond spoke to the Republican Eagle at 9:15 p.m. May 8, a little over an hour after the polls were closed, to give the results.

Redmond said there was "fantastic voter turnout" for the referendum.

"I think we've had a great conversation with our community," Redmond said. "The challenges facing the school aren't going away. They're not going to disappear. We've got to re-engage that conversation and listen some more and figure out the best way forward."

The school faces many facility challenges in regard to security, electrical and plumbing systems. There are areas that still have original parts from when the building was built in 1935 as well as additions made in the 1950s.

The school has seen six building additions since 1935, the most recent coming in 2003. The only other referendum to fail was Question 3 in 1969.

At this point there is no "Plan B" option.

"We've got to listen and we've got to try and get some sense of why folks voted no," Redmond said.

The facilities planning committee will meet May 17 to discuss the voting results.

Matthew Lambert

Matthew Lambert joined the Red Wing Republican Eagle in March 2018 covering school board, public safety, and writing features. Lambert previously wrote for the Pierce County Herald and River Falls Journal. He is a graduate of Winona State University with a Bachelor's degree in Mass Communication: Journalism. 

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