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Funding for government lapses as short-term spending bill stalls in the Senate

Board seeks quick action on bonds

In the wake of approval by voters, the Blackduck School Board acted quickly Monday to approve a resolution authorizing the sale of bonds to finance school building repairs and purchase new buses.

The resolution authorizes Ehlers & Associates, as the board's financial advisor, to solicit proposals for the purchase of $830,000 building bonds. Board members were told receipts from sale of the bonds would probably be available by mid-October, too late for roof repairs to be done this year, but in time for the purchase of new vehicles within weeks.

Earlier that day, a similar bond issue in International Falls had been sold with a 2.7 percent interest rate and the board was told a rate under 4 percent was probable for Blackduck with investor interest high in tax exempt bonds.

Discussing passage of the bond proposal by a 462-308 voter margin, Blackduck School Superintendent Robert Doetsch expressed appreciation to supporters and singled out Rodney Benson, Rachel Larson, Stacy George and Heather Forseen for their work on behalf of the measure.

Doetsch also handed out copies of a St. Paul Pioneer-Press study of schools regarded as "high poverty" based on the number of free or reduced-cost lunches served. Blackduck Elementary was one of those included in the study of 505 Minnesota schools. Blackduck was one of just seven posting better than average reading and math scores.

In other action, several staff changes were approved including four assistant coaching positions in basketball, golf and football for an additional $9,144.