A statement on the Bancroft public purchase from the Haddonfield Board of Education:
To the voters in the Haddonfield School District:
For too many years now, the future of the Bancroft School site, immediately adjacent to the Haddonfield High School, has hung in the balance as one proposal after another has been cast aside by community opinion, zoning regulations or redevelopment policies.
The Board of Education proposes to seize the opportunity of acquiring this historic and prominent “gateway into Haddonfield” for use by the community at large, for educational and recreational purposes, to allow for possible future school expansion and development of a high school campus, and to secure an open space legacy for our children.
Now is the time to act, when the Board of Education’s proposal is before the redevelopment agency, when it has been endorsed by the borough council, when open space funds and county grants may be available to reduce cost, and while financing rates are at historic lows to reduce borrowing cost.
The school district and our community are at a crossroads. Now is the time to decide before this opportunity is lost, before a “higher-density” proposal is submitted by the Bancroft School.
The Board of Education has completed due diligence on the site, negotiated a beneficial agreement of sale, sought out grants, drawn conceptual plans for initial phases of site improvements, and generally encouraged public discourse.
The purpose of a referendum is to allow the voters to make the final decision. On Jan. 22, 2013, the decision will rest in your hands. The BOE will not pursue a second referendum. We will have heard you one way or another. Your immediate responsibility is too become fully informed on this proposal and we hope this Q&A document will support that learning process. This is an unprecedented opportunity, and we ask for your attentive consideration of our proposal.