Weeping Water Public Schools was close to getting a $10 million for upgrades after a Tuesday bond issue vote, but four questionable ballots validated Wednesday morning were enough to overturn the vote.
The four votes, all no, brought the count to 333 against, 330 for.
The $10.28 million bond would have paid for a new ventilation system, including air conditioning, as well as fire sprinklers, 11 new classrooms, a gymnasium and fitness center and a new library between the school's elementary and secondary areas.
The Cass County Canvassing Board reviewed seven votes with sketchy signatures and ruled three ineligible.
The board re-scanned and hand-counted all the ballots and looked at the questioned ballots to decide whether they should be counted.
The school was built in 1939 with upgrades in 1965 and 1991.
Officials estimate the bond would have required a levy of 28 cents on $100 of taxable valuation, or $280 annually on a $100,000 home.
Weeping Water Superintendent Brian Gegg said he was disappointed but will continue to work
"We want to get the input of the 333 people that voted no and find out what their reasons were," Gegg said. "Was it the dollar amount, design?
"We want to find out because we want to make this work -- we have issues that need to be addressed and they aren't going to go away."