Somers-Lakeside School District Seeking $15.8 Million Bond

General obligation bond would update and expand aging Somers Middle School

By Dillon Tabish
Students eat lunch at Somers Middle School in the cafeteria where tiles are peeling off the floor on April 16, 2015. Greg Lindstrom | Flathead Beacon

The Somers-Lakeside School District is asking voters to approve a $15.8 million bond to rebuild part of Somers Middle School.

Ballots were mailed last week. Voters can mail back their ballots or fill them out at the district office. The election is Oct. 24.

If approved, the bond would replace parts of the middle school that were built in 1953 and have become antiquated and plagued with persistent maintenance needs, according to school officials.

The middle school, with an enrollment of 180 students, has aging infrastructure in two of its oldest sections. One section, the original school, was built in 1953. The second addition was built in 1967, including the carpeted gym. The bond would fund replacing the two older sections with a new facility that would include updated classrooms and shop space. The total square footage of the school would grow from 33,633 square feet to 57,090.

“There are a lot of needs throughout the whole facility,” superintendent Joe Price said.

“The infrastructure here is in tough shape. We have plumbing that is going bad. And we have a lack of good electrical outlets. There’s just a lot of stuff.”

If voters approve the 20-year bond, property taxes would increase roughly $160 annually on a home with a taxable value of $200,000, according to school officials.

Members of the public are invited to visit the school for a tour, Price said.

Price said the goal of the remodeled and expanded school would be to build a safe, modern learning space that is capable of meeting 21st century educational needs. He said the added space would also help accommodate projected growth in the surrounding area.

Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup.

Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox.