Saco voters will be asked to approve a $140.7 million bond to pay for two new schools. Contributed / Saco Schools

Saco residents will be asked to approve a bond to pay for a new Pre-K through Kindergarten school and a second building for students in grades one through five on June 11.

Question 2 on the local ballot asks voters to approve $140,749,348 of funding for both new schools; the state would pay $101 million of that amount.

At a recent City Council meeting, Councilor Nathan Johnston said the new buildings are very much needed and long overdue.

“Half my lifetime I’ve spent waiting for some kind of solution,” Johnston said.

The proposed new schools would be located on a plot of land between Mill Brook Road and Route 1 that borders the Eastern Trail.

According to the Info on 2 website, which can be found at, the new schools will be state-of-the-art facilities to include up-to-date technological access in all classrooms, unified art spaces that allow flexibility for the future, indoor and outdoor cafeteria seating, and multiple outdoor spaces for learning and play.


The buildings will also have capacity for 12 classrooms per grades PreK-Kindergarten, and 11 classes per grades one through five, with the ability to add up to 10 additional classrooms in the future.

“We’re excited about our plans,” Superintendent Jeremy Ray said. “We are on the path that we feel will be workable for our children and for the future of Saco.”

The approval of Question 2 would also allow the city to benefit from $101 million in state funding to be put towards the school project.

With the state funding, Saco’s share of the total project cost will be only 28%. According to the superintendent, taxpayers will be responsible for paying about $39 million for the new schools.

“We’re fortunate here in Saco that we’re going to have the opportunity to vote on a project that is going to be funded by 72% from the state,” Ray said.

If Question 2 passes, the owner of a home valued at $412,000 would pay $284 a year to cover Saco’s share of the project cost, according to the website, or about 69 cents per $1,000 of property value for the 20 year length of the bond.


The superintendent noted that surrounding towns such as Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough presented plans that would cost their residents far more than Saco residents.

In 2022, Cape Elizabeth voted down a $101 million bond to build a new elementary and middle school, and last year, Scarborough residents opposed spending $160 for a new elementary school and renovations to it’s middle school. Both towns are still grappling with how to fund needed improvements.

“What an awesome opportunity we have for our community,” Ray said.

If Question 2 does not pass, there is no back up plan, according to the website.

Saco residents will be faced with extensive repairs on outdated buildings that Councilor Phil Hatch said he was “appalled” to see the conditions of.

“Our kids deserve more than what we’re giving them,” Hatch said.

Absentee voting in Saco began May 13, and in-person voting takes place June 11 at Thornton Academy’s Linnell Gymnasium at 438 Main St.

In addition to the school bond, residents will be asked to vote on the proposed $52.2 million school budget for fiscal year 2025 which begins July 1.

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