Victory may prove short-lived for the Seattle School District's hotly debated $322 million bond initiative.

The measure, opposed by older residents and home owners, looked like it had squeezed by in the Nov. 8 elections. But now that outcome is in doubt, leaving voters waiting for tomorrow's certification of the final results.

Supporters' hopes dwindled last week when an unofficial count showed the bond measure falling just a hair short of the required 60% approval.

The ballot item received a 59.75% yes vote, and a 40.25% no vote, according to the tally. More than 12,000 absentee ballots remain to be counted, and a batch of absentee ballots counted earlier indicated that absentee voters -- generally older home owners oppose the measure by a 3-to-2 margin.

If the measure passes, it would impose a tax of $1.11 per $1,000 assessed property value.

Officials had proposed the bond measure to fund renovations of 21 Seattle schools, all of which are more than 60 years old.

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