Sapulpa voters pass historic school bond issue
Posted on 09/25/2023

(SPS) -- "What Sapulpa voters did was amazing," said Johnny Bilby, Sapulpa Public Schools Assistant Superintendent, the morning after voters passed an historic bond election for the district. "This will change lives for the next sixty to seventy years."

On Tuesday, September 12, unofficial election results indicated voters passed Proposition 1 of the Chieftain Stronger Bond 2023 proposal by 60.99%, just over the 60% super majority needed to pass bond elections in Oklahoma. Proposition 1 included the construction of a new Sapulpa High School. Proposition 2, which will fund a new transportation fleet, passed with 61.78% of the votes.

Following the election, a citizen petitioned for a recount of Proposition 1. The petition request met the requirements of state law. A manual recount was conducted by the Creek County Election Board on Friday, September 22, and the super majority in favor of the bond election was upheld and the votes were certified, 61% to 39%.

Sapulpa Times: Sapulpa's "Chieftain Stronger" school bond has been challenged and recounted, and the results are in

View the description of projects required under the Bond Transparency Act here.

A special Board of Education meeting will be held Tuesday, September 26, at 12:00 p.m. The board will vote on a motion to approve a resolution authorizing the sale of the district's first general obligation building bond in the project. Read the resolution.

More than 2,300 people voted in the largest bond issue in Sapulpa Public Schools' history, made up of the two propositions totaling $279,250,000. The total number of voters surpassed the 2014 bond issue, which previously held the record number of voters.

Following the passage of Chieftain Stronger Bond 2023, Sapulpa Public Schools will get to work quickly to begin schematic design with architects. During the schematic design process, the project team will gather information to further define space and programmatic needs for a new high school. This data will help build an initial concept that serves as the foundation for the design process. Schematic design takes approximately three months, as shown in the timeline below this article.

The schematic design process includes architectural firms, Reed Architecture and Interiors and DLR Group, and construction management firm, Nabholz, as well as a district steering committee and community outreach. Sapulpa Public Schools' board of education approved Reed Architecture and Interiors, DLR Group, and Nabholz, in the fall of 2022 following an extensive selection process.

Read more about the planning process that led up to the bond election.

Within the next 30 to 45 days, SPS will work with BOK Financial Consultant Zack Robinson on the first round of bond sales, which is a competitive bidding process. A special board meeting will be set to call for the first bond sale.

Sapulpa Public Schools is extraordinarily thankful to the Sapulpa community for recognizing the need for Chieftain Stronger Bond 2023 and coming out to the polls.

“We are pleased and grateful to the Sapulpa community for seeing the need for this bond proposal. We look forward to designing and building a new high school which will forge a strong future for Sapulpa students. The next steps will happen in short order, and Sapulpans will soon see progress on the projects listed in this bond issue," said Rob Armstrong, SPS Superintendent.

"The new high school learning environment will mirror educational pathways and the tremendous opportunities for students at Sapulpa Public Schools. The results of the Chieftain Stronger bond will also positively impact our community as a whole. Thank you for your support, Sapulpa!” said Mr. Armstrong.

We are committed to keeping you up-to-date on progress. Keep checking for continued updates.