Mojave Unified School Facilities Improvement District No. 1 Bond Issue, Measure A (June 2014)

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A Mojave Unified School Facilities Improvement District No. 1 Bond Issue, Measure A ballot question was on the June 3, 2014 election ballot for voters in the Mojave Unified School Facilities Improvement District No. 1 in Kern County, California, where it was defeated.

If approved, Measure A would have authorized the first facilities improvement district of the Mojave Unified School District to increase its debt by $8.1 million through issuing general obligation bonds in that amount in order to improve, modernize, renovate and construct school facilities and technology. The property tax rate required to repay this proposed bond debt was estimated at $22 per $100,000 of assessed valuation.[1]

A 55 percent supermajority vote was required for the approval of Measure A.

Election results

Measure A
ResultVotesPercentage
Defeatedd No69045.19%
Yes 837 54.81%
Election results from Kern County Elections Office

Text of measure

Ballot question

The question on the ballot:[1]

To improve the quality of education for California City students, modernize infrastructure and classroom technology, improve health and safety, and repay leases used to build Cal City High in order to reduce operating costs and put more money in the classroom, shall the Mojave Unified School District School Facilities Improvement District No. 1 be authorized to issue up to $8,100,000 in bonds at legal interest rates, with annual audits, a Citizens’ Oversight committee, and no money for salaries?[2]

Impartial analysis

The following impartial analysis of Measure A was prepared by the office of the county counsel:[1]

A "Yes" vote by at least fifty-five percent (55%) of the voters voting on this measure will authorize the issuance and sale of general obligation bonds for the benefit of the Mojave Unified School District Schools Facilities Improvement District No. 1 in an amount up to eight million one hundred thousand dollars ($8,100,000).

Proceeds from the sale of these school bonds may only be used for the specific school facilities projects listed in the bond project list. The projects include: (1) acquirement of classroom technology; (2) health, safety, and security upgrades to schools within the California City; (3) repairs and improvements to school infrastructure for the benefit of California City students; (4) repayment of interim financing used to construct California City High School; (5) furnishing and equipping of schools in California City; and (6) necessary deferred maintenance on facilities. The Proceeds may only be used for a specific list of projects and not for any other purpose including teacher and administrator salaries and other operating expenses. As required by law, the District has listed the specific projects to be funded, in whole or in part, by the bonds. The list of projects is printed in the sample ballot.

The District will conduct an annual independent performance audit, in order to ensure that the bond proceeds have been expended only on the specific projects listed, and an annual independent financial audit of the bond proceeds until all of those funds have been expended. In addition, the District's Board of Trustees will appoint a Citizens' Oversight Committee to inform the public concerning the expenditure of bond revenues.

The bonded debt will be a general obligation of the District and will be financed by property taxes levied annually on taxable property located within the District in an amount necessary to pay the annual debt obligation. Approval of the bond measure does not guarantee that the listed projects will be completed. Certain of the District's proposed projects assume the receipt of matching State funds, which could be subject to appropriation by the State Legislature or approval of a state-wide bond measure. The District's Tax Rate Statement provides an estimate of the tax rates which will be applied to fund the bonds issued.[2]

[1]

Support

Supporters

The following individuals signed the official arguments in favor of Measure A:[1]

  • Merrie Schafer, parent
  • Michael Stewart Edmiston, community activist
  • Shane M. Moore, educator/coach
  • Richard Walpole, retired educator
  • James A. Hooper, trustee and retired educator

Arguments in favor

Official arguments

The following official arguments were submitted in favor of Measure A:[1]

As residents of California City, we have always taken care of our own. We look out for our community, and take care of our kids. Working together in California City, we've realized a dream of providing new and modernized schools from Kindergarten through 12th grade so that our children have a place to learn.

As school districts throughout California begin to emerge from the depths of the financial crisis, we must no position our local schools to make sure our students have the best opportunities for success. Measure "A" will modernize infrastructure and classroom technology, improve health and safety, and repay leases used to build Cal City High in order to reduce operating costs and put more money in the classroom.

MEASURE "A" WILL:

Ensure students have access to 21st century classroom technology to prepare students for college and good paying jobs.

Put money back into the classroom by paying off existing leases used to construct California City High School and put funds back into the classroom where it belongs.

MEASURE "A" MAKES FINANCIAL SENSE, IT WILL:

Invest in our local schools within California City and improve our economy

Will provide an immediate return on our investment to benefit our students

Guarantee funds raised in our California City stay in California City and cannot be taken away by the State

BY LAW, TAXPAYER SAFEGUARDS ARE IN PLACE. MEASURE "A" REQUIRES:

An independent committee of senior citizens, taxpayer advocates, local business owners and parents to ensure funds are only used for voter-approved projects.

Annual independent performance and financial audits.

Funds be used to improve schools - not to pay salaries or administrative overhead.

Support our California City children and support our schools vote YES on Measure "A"![2]

—Merrie Schafer, Michael Stewart Edmiston, Shane M. Moore, Richard Walpole and James A. Hooper[1]

Opposition

The Kern County Taxpayers' Association announced its opposition to Measure A, as well as Measure B, the Elk Hills School District bond measure.[3]

See also

External links

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