Bond issue for gym/storm shelter before voters in Marquand

If the bond issue passes, the new gym/storm shelter would be built in this plot.
If the bond issue passes, the new gym/storm shelter would be built in this plot.
The district needs to add $375,000 to a FEMA grant for a new building that would double as a storm shelter and a gymnasium.
The district needs to add $375,000 to a FEMA grant for a new building that would double as a storm shelter and a gymnasium.
A coach at the high school says the kids need a better place to play.
A coach at the high school says the kids need a better place to play.

MARQUAND, MO (KFVS) - Old facilities, and round after round of severe weather has the Marquand-Zion school district asking for help from voters.

They call it a No-Increase Tax Levee. The district needs to add $375,000 to a FEMA grant for a new building that would double as a storm shelter and a gymnasium.

"Now is the time to do it," said Susan Settle of Marquand. "We need to do it now while the money is available."

Proposition 2 would bring in money that would be added to $900,000 from FEMA. The new building would be build on campus behind the existing gym.

"If Marquand voters want a new gym, they need to take the opportunity now," said Superintendent Duane Schindler. "Otherwise the district doesn't have the money."

Schindler says if Proposition 2 isn't passed, and the grant money goes unused, FEMA will use it in another state. He says voters won't see their taxes go up. The levee will be extended.

"This would give Marquand a safe haven from storms and also double as a gym for the school," said Schindler.

The current gym is historic, and would remain an important part of campus. But, it isn't regulation size. Coach Lawrence Graves says the kids need a better place to play.

"They're really excited about the possibility," said Graves. "It would be great for the kids."

Voters say issues that impact the school always get a lot of attention in small communities like Marquand.

"We really need it," said Billy Ray Starkey. "I think it's a great plan."

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