Education A State Capitals Roundup

New Jersey Voters Cool to School Building Plans

By Robert C. Johnston — October 04, 2005 1 min read

New Jersey’s tattered statewide school construction program likely played a part in the lower-than-average passing rate for school construction proposals in balloting last week in 39 districts.

In total, 27 of the 49 local school construction projects put to a vote passed, representing a 55 percent approval rate and $401.5 million in construction projects. But that rate lags behind the 72 percent approval rate for all such projects since the state enacted a major school facility program in 2000, according to the New Jersey School Boards Association.

The program is running out of money, however, and can finance only about $60 million of the roughly $109.3 million in projects passed last week that are eligible for state aid. (“N.J. Facility Fund Dries Up, Scores of Plans on Hold,” Aug. 10, 2005)

“I definitely think voters had that in the back of their heads,” Frank Belluscio, the director of public information for the NJSBA, said of the state program and the below-average approval rate.

A version of this article appeared in the October 05, 2005 edition of Education Week