Feedback: What Happened In Carthage School District?

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A slick video and 94 percent state aid made no difference to angry taxpayers when it came to voting on a capital project for the Carthage Central School District on Wednesday.

"'Cause the taxes are too high now and people around here can't afford it," said Ronald Hill, who voted against the plan.

"The school always do what they want. It's like an open checkbook to them," said district resident James Smith.

Wednesday's message was loud and clear.

By a 600 vote margin, voters rejected a massive plan to upgrade all of the district's buildings and close the Great Bend building.

The $34 million price tag may have scared many voters.

But could there be another reason the project was so emphatically rejected?

Recent school board controversies including a superintendent's resignation may have shaken voter confidence.

"People are dissatisfied with probably the board of education in general because they feel there's been such a controversy in the past," said Doreen Hebert, who voted to approve the project.

Some work may be necessary sooner or later.

"If probably some of the project would have come in separate votes, it would have been a different outcome," said Clifton Hebert, who voted yes for the project. 

School Board President Mike Chevier didn't return our calls.

His board mulls its next step on Monday.

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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