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School bond approved with 62% in final tally

Ferndale High School file photo. Whatcom News

The Whatcom County Auditor’s Office Elections Division reported Friday the final count of votes had been certified in the February 12th Special election. The Ferndale School District $112 million bond proposition was approved with 62.04% approval votes, passing the required 60% supermajority threshold and meeting the requirement for the total number of votes cast.

The proposition received 6,078 votes in favor and 3,719 opposed out of a total of 9,797 votes. The bond issue is intended to fund building a new Ferndale High School ($105 million) as well as perform critical maintenance ($4 million) and safety and security improvements ($1 million) on other buildings throughout the district.

In addition to the supermajority approval requirement, the total number of votes cast needed to be more than 40% of those cast in the most recent General Election. 15,224 votes were cast in the November General Election so more than 6,090 votes were needed to be cast to validate the bond proposition in the Special Election.

The approval vote allows the bond issue to be paid back over 20 years using property taxes imposed on taxable properties within Ferndale School District boundaries.

Supporters and the Ferndale School District have announced a community event on March 9th at 2pm in the Ferndale High School Cafeteria to celebrate approval of the bond issue. According to organizers, “Members of the School Board, Community Oversight Committee, and Support Ferndale Schools will be there to answer questions and say “Thank You.”


  1. Bryce Hanson February 25, 2019

    Aren’t we still paying a tax on the 07 renovations? Anyone who thinks rebuilding the school for 110 million in taxpayer dollars is wack in my book. Imagine if that was paid towards teacher salaries instead of a new building. You could pay 50 teachers(my guess based off of student population and class sizes) 90k a year And still have a million per year for maintenance etc. Mind you that 90k is on top of what they would already be making. After 20 years you could vote to renew it again. Just my $0.02.

  2. Robert Hanes February 26, 2019

    Soooo, help me out on this one.

    Original school bond goes on the ballot and doesn’t get approved. The voters spoke – but wait, not so fast.

    It would seem that those that didn’t like the original outcome can use taxpayer dollars (because virtually ALL of the money spent pretty much anywhere within the school system is taxpayer dollars) to put the same bond measure on yet another ballot for further consideration. The outcome of the “Special Election” is now agreeable to these folks, so the results officially stand.

    But wait!! Based on the same logic that supporters utilized, couldn’t those that don’t support the bond measure utilize taxpayer dollars to have yet another vote in hopes of getting the results they desire?? Let’s not forget that THOSE results were already achieved once before – but those results apparently didn’t count.

    In case you hadn’t picked up on it, yeah – I’m a little irritated. Not so much by the fact that the bond measure passed, but by the manner in which it was passed.

    The first question I’ll be asking anyone in Ferndale that complains about how high their property taxes (or rent) are will be “How did you vote on the school bond measure?” If you voted for it, you have no right to complain.

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