GREENWOOD, Miss. (AP) — A school district in the Mississippi Delta should wait to try to borrow money because voters might be reluctant to support a bond issue during the coronavirus pandemic, says a retired educator who serves in two elected offices.
David Jordan spoke last week at a board meeting for the Greenwood Leflore Consolidated School District, the Greenwood Commonwealth reported he is a Democrat who serves in the Mississippi Senate and on the Greenwood City Council.
The Greenwood Leflore district is considering a bond issue but has not specified how large it will be. It also has not set an election.
At least 60% of local voters must approve before a school district can borrow money through a bond issue. Jordan said reaching that margin can be difficult even without the financial uncertainty of the pandemic.
“The worst thing you can do is get it out there and it fails,” Jordan said.
Jordan mentioned a failed attempt to pass a 1998 bond issue that would have built a new Greenwood High School and a new elementary school. A less ambitious attempt by the Greenwood district four years later also failed.
The Greenwood and Leflore County school districts have merged in the past two years.
Jordan said the board should wait a couple of years for a bond vote. “I don’t think now is the time to do it because of what we have before us, the epidemic,” he said.