Kirkwood Community College looking for bond extension - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Kirkwood Community College looking for bond extension


Kirkwood Community College is asking voters in seven counties to approve an extension for a bond issue that was approved in 2005.

The 20 cent per $1,000 of valuation bond issue is estimated to generate $46.5 million dollars over 15 years.

Kirkwood says they would use the money to build three new regional education centers in Johnson, Linn and Washington counties along with renovating Linn Hall, Kirkwood's first building on their main campus.

The regional education centers allow local high schools to partner with Kirkwood and provide labs and courses that the schools can't afford individually.  The students are allowed to take the dual-credit classes for free, saving them money on tuition.

"3,615 area students and their parents saved more than $2.4 million in tuition costs last year by taking our dual-credit classes," said Kirkwood President Mick Starcevich, in a written statement. "And that's at our low Kirkwood tuition. They're saving even more if they transfer those credits to a four-year college or university."

In Linn Hall, the college plans to update the outdated plumbing, electrical, heating, cooling, ventilation and telecommunications systems.  They say a new geothermal system will save them $200,000 a year in energy costs.

With the bond issue that was passed in 2005, Kirkwood built the Healthcare Simulation Center, the Horticulture and Floral Careers building, new Hospitality laboratories and upgrades and additions to Cedar, Johnson and Jones halls.

Kirkwood adds that this is not an additional tax and tax rates will not change.

If approved, Kirkwood says it will cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $20 per year.

Voters in Benton, Cedar, Iowa, Johnson, Jones, Linn and Washington counties will vote on the extension on September 13 along with their local school district elections.

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