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Bonds busted: Norman voters turn down all four 'GO Norman' bonds

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Norman City Council (copy)

Members of the Norman City Council discuss the new Norman flag during their June 9 meeting.

On Tuesday, Norman residents voted no to all four propositions in a bond package that aimed to invest a total of $119.9 million into the city.

The General Obligation Norman 2020 bond package consisted of four propositions to complete the remaining Norman FORWARD quality-of-life projects, address homelessness in Norman, renovate municipal facilities and provide relief to Norman’s small businesses, according to a City of Norman webpage.

If the entirety of the four-proposition package passed, it would cost the average Norman homeowner around $13.93 a month "for all four propositions," according to the City of Norman website. The city also provided estimates of the annual economic impact of each bond's passage.

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, however, most of the bonds were easily defeated, according to unofficial online results from the Oklahoma State Election Board.

Proposition 1 turned down additional funding for Norman FORWARD, a sales tax funded proposal approved in 2015 to “renovate, expand, construct and fund Quality of Life projects.” Some of the approved projects required additional funding, which is what $86.5 million of the bond package would have covered. The proposition failed, with 59 percent of voters voting "No."

These projects included the multi-sports and aquatic center, senior wellness center, softball/football complex, Ruby Grant Park, Reaves Park and a parks maintenance facility. 

Proposition 2 aimed to allocate $5 million to construct one or more homelessness solutions. This bond measure saw the narrowest defeat, but was turned down with 11,579 "No" votes to 11,212 "Yes," according to the Oklahoma State Election Board unofficial results.

Proposition 3 would have provided $24.3 million to "complete municipal services facilities," including an emergency operations/dispatch center, fleet and fire maintenance facilities, a stand-alone municipal court and renovations to the police department and city hall. These projects were also previously approved by voters and required additional funding. The proposition was turned down by 61 percent of voters.

Proposition 4 was intended to provide $5 million for a small business relief fund, and was defeated with 59 percent of voters turning down the measure.

Editor's Note: This article was updated at 9:54 p.m. Aug. 25 to reflect updated unofficial county results numbers from the Oklahoma Election Results website.

Jana Hayes is a senior reporter on The Daily's news desk. She is a journalism senior and has worked at The Daily since her freshman year, having held several reporter and editor positions on both the news and enterprise desks.

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