A majority of New Baltimore and Chesterfield voters sided Tuesday with the county majority in rejecting Macomb Community College's $56-million bond proposal.
In Chesterfield Township, a total of 10,761 voters rejected the proposal as 7,913 approved it. In New Baltimore, the gap tightened with 2,963 no votes and 2,319 yes votes, according to county election results.
“We’re obviously disappointed in the results of the election,” said Dr. James Jacobs, Macomb Community College president, in a prepared statement. “But we also understand the longstanding economic challenges that Macomb County residents are still weathering, which we suspect may have factored into reluctance to fund even a very small tax increase with a short time limit."
The proposal asked Macomb County voters to authorize up to $56 million in bond sales to preserve and update the college’s facilities and technology. Per the proposal, the bonds were to be sold in a series to cover the expense of renovating and updating the college's infrastructure and technology.
As much of the college was built more than four decades ago, MCC officials have said significant renovations are needed to make necessary technology upgrades, increase accessibility as mandated by current standards, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, and improve building operational efficiency through modern heating and cooling, plumbing and lighting systems.
Although the proposal failed, Jacobs said, "Macomb is committed to providing meaningful career training and transfer opportunities, and we will continue to do the best with the resources we have."
Macomb Community College’s Board of Trustees, which includes recently re-elected Joseph DeSantis and Roseanne DiMaria, as well as newly elected Frank Cusumano, will evaluate the results of the election and determine any necessary next steps.