DD2 voters choose “yes” in bond referendum special election

SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – Dorchester County voters said yes to a multimillion-dollar bond referendum in the May 14th Special Election.

Dorchester School District Two officials told News 2 on Tuesday night results showed 76% of voters voted yes while 24% voted against the referendum. They said those results included early and absentee ballots as well.

“Honestly, the real work starts now. We have a serious obligation to make sure that we spend this money in a manner that our community is going to be proud of and make room for the students that are moving into our community,” said DD2 Superintendent Dr. Shane Robbins after the results came in.

For the first time since 2012, DD2 conducted a referendum to tackle overcrowding and degradation within district schools.

“We need to get the schools to be the best they can,” said Jade Hill, an employee for DD2 who voted on Tuesday.

With voter approval, the district vowed to spend up to $200,000,000 on a long list of projects ranging from security and safety enhancements at all facilities, the construction of two new elementary schools, and various renovations and additions to existing schools.

“Schools are crowded. I’ve been to the school; I have my grandchild there. And the classes are crowded, and they need some more schools,” said Gary Duggins, a Summerville voter who told News 2 he was supporting the referendum.

According to DD2 officials, between early and absentee voting, there were 1,109 yes votes and 222 no votes.

On Election Day, voters cast their ballots at their designated polling locations such as Summerville Senior Center. By 6 p.m., the polling manager on site said they had 276 voters come through the doors. Summerville resident Sharon Millhouse was one of them.

“I’m showing my support,” Millhouse said. “Well, for one, I have four grandnieces about to start school so anything to help them, I’m for it because somebody helped me.”

The referendum did have some critics. Earlier this month, Summerville Police arrested a man for spray painting “no to taxes” on “vote yes” signs. However, officials pointed out the referendum does not include a tax or millage rate increase for residents.

Back in 2012, DD2 voters passed a $179,000,000 referendum.

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Author: Jordan Cioppa