In a stunning development that will mean Upper Perkiomen School District taxpayers spent $8 million for a hole in the ground, the newly elected majority of the school board Monday night voted 5-4 to kill the project on which construction has already begun.
It took place at a marathon four-hour meeting, moved to the high school auditorium due to the expected crowd, which showed up in force -- on both sides of the issue.
Newly sworn in board members Melanie Cunningham, Stephen Cunningham, James Glackin and newly elected School Board President Kerry Drake, joined board member Raeann Hofkin in providing the five votes.
Before the voting took place, however, 24 speakers had their say and by the end of the night, 31 had spoken, some more than once. A total of four of them spoke in favor of the board's course of action.
The actual cost of the decision remains unknown. When board member John Farris asked for what it would cost to stop construction, Superintendent Alexis McGloin said "I don't know the answer to that question."
Board member Melanie Cunningham, who at the end of the night said many of the supporters of the middle school project were making assumptions about what the new majority intended, said every day construction continues, the number changes.
A motion by Farris to delay the vote was defeated, and pleas by board members Judith Maginnis and Mike W. Elliott failed to change the minds of the board. majority.
Some speakers said those opposed to the middle school project had made similar pleas for delays before voting to start construction, both before and after the election, and had been similarly ignored.
Here are the Tweets from the meeting. Look for more coverage in upcoming editions of The Mercury.