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Lopsided Result in High School Vote [VIDEO]

Plan passes Special Election with 75 percent support.

Following a landslide victory in Tuesday’s Special Town Election, even normally composed Town Manager Michael Caira cracked a smile in the hallway of Town Hall as a group of residents and officials celebrated the voter decision.

But the celebration won’t last too long as one more critical hurdle remains to decide if the town will indeed pass a new Wilmington High School.

“People should not get complacent,” said Caira. “Those folks who are in support of the new school, and obviously there are many of them, need to go to Town Meeting for one last and important vote. Once that takes place, we’re on our way.”

During Tuesday’s election, the “Yes” votes won out by a count of 3,778-1,247, a total of about 75 percent support. The school must next pass by a two-thirds majority at Saturday’s Special Town Meeting, slated for 10:30 a.m. in the high school gym.

Though Superintendent of Schools Joanne Benton shared in Caira’s excitement, she said school officials also realize the process is not over.

“I feel nervous anticipation until Saturday is over with,” said Benton. “I was thrilled by the result, but we’re only halfway there.”

School Committee Chairman Margaret Kane was among the crowd of about 25 people who gathered at Town Hall and cheered as the results were posted.

“Not exactly disbelief, but I was feeling glad that the town came together and they did what I consider to be the right thing,” said Kane, who admitted that the number of ‘No’ votes was still a concern.

Town Clerk Sharon George said the total number of 5,025 votes cast was the highest turnout she has seen in her tenure. There are a total of 15,375 registered voters in Wilmington, which means about one-third of eligible residents weighed in on the school.

Caira said he was mildly surprised by how lopsided the result was, which played a part in his excitement when the decision was announced.

“It all came together,” said Caira. “When you feel good about something, it’s time to crack a smile.”

Bean December 08, 2011 at 07:25 PM
I've never seen people so pleased about forking out more money for something that really isn't needed. Yet another example of the keeping up with the joneses mentality that has caused all the country's economic problems to begin with. The town of "xx" got a new high school, therefore we need one too. Great logic. This school will not make our kids any more competitive. It all starts at home, folks.
Randle McMurphy December 08, 2011 at 10:42 PM
A little dab'll do ya.
Josephine MorningStar December 09, 2011 at 03:15 PM
I do not object to the new high school. I object to the location / footprint of the new hs. The way that it is presented to be built, seriously impacts the wetland. Its not the school that will be impacted the most, but the neighbors around those wetlands, They will be the ones to suffer from more flooding!. So, now might be a good time to take out some extra insurance... Flood insurance.. maybe? you can replace your property, repair the damage. But be sure to keep up with the payments.. this will be a forever problem.
Christine December 10, 2011 at 03:35 PM
@ Bean, from MY experience the same people voting yes for this project ARE the same people keeping YOUR property value up by OFFERING to improve the town with a modern updated public facility..many of us ( according to you, friends of the Joneses) will be paying double the average tax yet we do it willingly and with the intention of improving education for all Wilmington's kids...you think this new school passed for all the wrong reasons... You should read a book about the collapse of our country's economy if you think projects like this are the root cause... It started and will end by controlling corruption and greed on Wall Street and by protecting the middle classes...not with a town with a fantastic financially stable history or with a 157.00 tax increase...A High School will never be cheaper than the one you're building today..that makes this a perfectly logical time to do it...despite what my neighbor's are doing...I respectfully disagree with you...

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