The Harvey County Conservative Women's Forum hosted a public forum on the upcoming school bond issue on Thursday, July 25, 2019 at 423 N Main to an overflow crowd of approximately 120.

Toby Tyner, USD 373 school board member, presented a PowerPoint of the needs to be addressed with the school bond proposal and House Representative Renee Erickson, Newton High School graduate and former NHS teacher, presented an alternative viewpoint. After their initial statements, they answered written questions from the audience.

While the need for upgrading and modernizing of the local schools is apparent from the PowerPoint and discussion presented by Tyner, the consideration of the quality of education and support of the teachers as well as the possibility of rethinking use of available space and available funds was emphasized by Erickson. Both presented reasoned and articulate arguments.

Some questions remained unanswered such as what happens to the unique program of the Walton school if a new school is built south of town to replace it. With a mill levy increase of 7.44 for Question 1 and increase of 3.50 for Question 2, thankfully the city has decided to cut its tax increase to 3 mills in the city budget. Seems like a little more than the cost of a pizza as a previous school bond suggested, which incidently has taxpayers on the hook until 2026.

The CWF thanks all those that attended and participated in this very informative forum.

— Helen Thompson, Newton