A majority of voters in Taylor County made it clear last month: They didn't support the proposed $9.7 million school bond issue.
Now, Taylor County Board of Education members are hoping to find out exactly why.
Board members will seek public comment -- written and spoken --on the bond issue during a special meeting at 7 p.m. Monday in the commons area of Grafton High School.
"I think that if a bond doesn't pass, this is the step that you take," said board member John Whitescarver. "If you spend the taxpayers' money to put a bond out, you inquire why it did pass or why it didn't pass."
"We're entrusted to take steps for the welfare of the children of the county," Whitescarver added. "Part of that is for procuring money for the facilities. If there are any options that people would suggest, we want to hear those ideas."
Taylor County residents rejected the bond issue during a special election in late December.
Taylor County Board of Education President Betty Rose Morrison said she doesn't know why the bond was turned down.
"I was sure there was something for everyone," she said. "What they want, I don't know."
The bond would have financed improvements to five schools, including nearly $6 million for new athletic facilities at Grafton High School.
The bond also would have provided money for three elementary schools, including $1.1 million for Flemington, $1.2 million for Pruntytown and $1.3 million for Hepzibah.
More than $200,000 would have been set aside for upgrades to athletic fields at Taylor County Middle School.
Morrison pointed out that county residents have long been supportive of funding better school facilities.
"I think what people forget is that through the years, beginning in 1938, people said they want better school facilities and decided that they wanted to finance new schools," she said. "Each time people said, 'Yes, we want better schools,' and they have done it.'"
Whitescarver also wasn't sure why residents chose to reject the bond.
"We felt that the bond was the answer, and I still feel that way," he said. "But that's depending on the will and pleasure of the voters."