Hingham residents approved the $60.9 million middle school at Special Town Meeting Monday night by a margin of only 82 votes.
The final tally was 1,414 in favor and 584 against – a number that narrowly met the requirement of a two-thirds majority.
The ballots were counted by a requested ballot vote at the heavily attended meeting at Hingham High School, where voters packed the gymnasium, auditorium, cafeteria, and several classrooms.
The Middle School warrant article authorizes the town to borrow for the full amount for the model school design, construction, and implementation. Approximately 44 percent of that cost will later be reimbursed back to the town by the Massachusetts School Building Authority.
In addition to approving the middle school, town meeting also approved the $935,000 tennis court/track/field study, which will spend $60,000 to repair the tennis courts, $600,000 to reconstruct and rebuild the track, and $275,000 to develop design and construction documents for an all purpose field.
A standing vote of 1,818 to 266 authorized the town to borrow for the full amount of the project.
Both the middle school vote and the fields vote will go to a townwide ballot vote this Saturday, Oct. 29, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the addresses below.
The town also passed a request to petition the state to lease the land at the Bathing Beach for possible use as a snack shop/bath house.
Although few spoke against the idea – including Bernard Manning who said that the snack shop might become a drug den known as the “smack shop” – majority of residents approved the idea and approved it in a voice vote.
The town took no action on the swap shop article, the alternate middle school first proposal - Article 4, or the alternate middle school second proposal – Article 6.
Check back for the full story later today.
Precincts 1, 2, 3, 5 - Hingham High School, 17 Union Street
Precincts 4, 6 - Hingham Middle School, 1103 Main Street
Precinct 6A - The Derby Clubhouse Building, 302 Linden Ponds Way