Hawkeye Community College Board of Trustees Set March Date for $35 Million Bond Referendum

posted on Wednesday, November 30, 2022 in  College News
WATERLOO–On Tuesday, the Hawkeye Community College Board of Trustees approved a resolution to bring a $35 million bond referendum to voters in Hawkeye’s 10-county service area on March 7, 2023. Funds from the bond would be used to renovate and expand existing college facilities for skilled trades and apprenticeship programs, law enforcement training, and STEM education.

The proposed projects are part of Hawkeye’s master facilities plan, the result of a multi-year development process to identify the facilities needed to best meet student and community needs. The plan was developed by examining demographic information, workforce projections, and the college’s programs, services, and facilities. The college also sought input and guidance on the facility projects and improvements from business leaders, program advisory board members, college employees, and the community at large.

The first phase includes the renovation and expansion of Butler Hall to create a Skilled Trades and Apprenticeship Center, housing construction, HVAC, plumbing, electrical, automotive, and diesel technology programs under one roof. This center will increase collaboration across credit and non-credit programs, as well as provide for the efficient use of space and equipment.

Bremer Hall would be renovated to create a STEM Learning Center, increasing the educational opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics with lab space and interactive learning technology. The STEM Learning Center will provide a space for middle and high school students from across the region to explore the ever-growing opportunities in STEM careers.

Phase two focuses on Hawkeye’s law enforcement training programs, expanding the Law Enforcement Training Center on the south end of campus to meet the needs of regional law enforcement agencies. This project includes replacing and relocating aging indoor and outdoor firing ranges.  

Additionally, the college would also fund upgrades to its aging mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems in various buildings.

The measure is not a new tax. It will continue the existing levy rate overwhelmingly approved by service area voters in 2015. It would cost the owner of a $100,000 home approximately $1.20 per month or $14.40 a year.

“This bond referendum will allow Hawkeye to be better positioned to meet the critical needs of our workforce,” said Dr. Todd Holcomb, president of Hawkeye Community College. “With more than 68% of jobs requiring some training and education beyond high school, education and job training are vital to our economy.”

By law, community colleges fund new construction or major renovation through the bond tax levy and must pass bond referendums with a 60% majority. The March 7 special election is open to all registered voters in Merged Area VII including all or parts of Benton, Black Hawk, Bremer, Buchanan, Butler, Chickasaw, Fayette, Floyd, Grundy, and Tama counties.


  1. Apprenticeship
  2. Board of Trustees
  3. Bond Referendum
  4. STEM
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