BOE may put MHS upgrades on the ballot in March

The Manasquan Board of Education is considering going out for a referendum in March to address safety and security needs at the high school. FILE PHOTO

MANASQUAN — The Manasquan Board of Education is considering a March 12 referendum to address air quality and fire alarm system needs at Manasquan High School [MHS].

School board members agreed to file paperwork for a possible referendum during the reorganization meeting last Thursday.

The school’s most recent referendum was held on Jan. 24, 2017, for $12 million of improvements to both the elementary and high schools in Manasquan. The project was approved after voters rejected two earlier plans, which had included a new heating, ventilation and air conditioning [HVAC] unit and fire alarm system for the high school.

“We figured we could get more time out of them [the HVAC unit and fire alarm system], and the original referendum was defeated twice,” said board President Eugene Cattani. “So when we went out the third time, we went strictly for immediate safety, security and education reasons,” he said.

Approved improvements from the Jan. 24, 2017 referendum included for Manasquan Elementary School: a fire alarm system, windows, HVAC controls, phone systems, site work and additional building renovations; for the high school: an addition and renovations, stair tower doors and alternative building renovations.

Board Vice President Alfred Sorino said some residents may resist a new bond issue if they do not know why the HVAC and fire alarm upgrades were removed from the 2017 ballot question.

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