Bristol and Warren voters approve $200 million school bond

By Ethan Hartley
Posted 11/7/23

Voters in both Bristol and Warren overwhelmingly approved a $200M bond initiative to build a new Mt. Hope High School and make improvements to other buildings on Tuesday, Nov. 7.

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Register to post events

If you'd like to post an event to our calendar, you can create a free account by clicking here.

Note that free accounts do not have access to our subscriber-only content.

Day pass subscribers

Are you a day pass subscriber who needs to log in? Click here to continue.

Bristol and Warren voters approve $200 million school bond


Voters in Bristol and Warren overwhelmingly approved a school construction bond worth up to $200 million during Tuesday’s Special Election.

At the time of this writing, unofficial results from the three polling locations in Bristol showed that 2,622 voters approved of the bond, versus 1,337 that rejected it, a margin of 66.2% in favor to 33.8% against.

The numbers showed similarly from Warren’s two polling centers, where voters approved the bond by a margin of 1,254 to 670 (65.2% in favor to 34.8% against).

“I am so excited for our students and for our towns,” said Superintendent Ana Riley on Tuesday evening. “It's really so validating to know that the margin was so large, and it's just a real acknowledgment of the need and that people could see the vision of what we want for our kids.”

“The people of Bristol and Warren both are trusting us with this once in a lifetime investment in our kids,” said School Committee Chairperson Nicky Piper. “And what a message that sends to our kids; that they deserve better and are worth better.”

Piper said that she had been hoping the results would be definitive, indicative that a sizable majority of people in both communities were buying into the need for better facilities to foster a better educational environment for students, and hopefully lead to better outcomes and opportunities.

“For me it’s not just about the percentage of votes in favor, but the number of people who showed up,” she said. “It showed that people really did listen and become involved in this process.”

Riley said that now that voter approval has been secured, they now await the Rhode Island Department of Education’s (RIDE) approval of their Stage 2 application, which should come by mid-December.

“As soon as they approve, it's time to hire a construction manager and start working on the next steps. This whole next year will be about design and community engagement,” she said. “I keep telling our high school students, you will help design the new building.”

With a deadline of June 30, 2028 to have all projects within the bond scope underway, the district’s work is certainly far from complete.

“Now the real work starts,” Piper said. “We continue to work with RIDE to get max reimbursement and work on the design phase. Our eyes will still be laser focused on fiscal responsibility and student outcomes. A lot of work is definitely ahead of us, but tonight is something we should be proud of.”

2024 by East Bay Media Group

Barrington · Bristol · East Providence · Little Compton · Portsmouth · Tiverton · Warren · Westport
Meet our staff
Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.