Iowa Supreme Court shuts down vote on school demolition

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IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court has ended an effort in Iowa City to save an elementary school, saying that even as residents are voting on a preservation proposal, the district has a right to ignore their views and demolish the building.

The decision Friday comes on a lawsuit brought by Iowa City Community School District patrons in 2017, after the school board refused to place on a special election ballot a measure asking voters whether to approve demolition of Hoover Elementary School. The school was dedicated in 1954 by former President Herbert Hoover, an Iowa native.

The state supreme court reversed a lower court's ruling ordering the vote be held. The high court says state law only allows voters to weigh in on the sale, lease or other disposition of property, not demolition of property.

Early voting on the measure opened two weeks ago. Johnson County officials now say votes on the issue won't be tallied.


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