Southern Humboldt Joint Unified School District Bond Issue, Measure N (June 2014)

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A Southern Humboldt Joint Unified School District Bond Issue, Measure N ballot question was on the June 3, 2014 election ballot for voters in the Southern Humboldt Joint Unified School District in Humboldt and Mendocino counties, California, where it was defeated.

Measure N authorized the district to increase its debt by $10 million through issuing general obligation bonds in that amount in order to repair, modernize and improve school facilities and technology. The required tax rate to repay these bonds was estimated to be $43 per $100,000 of assessed valuation.[1]

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

Election results

DefeateddMeasure N
County: Yes No
Votes  % Votes  %
Humboldt County 637 51.62% 597 48.38%
Mendocino County 8 14.29% 12 20 85.71%
Totals: 645 51.11% 617 48.89%
These results are from the Humboldt County elections office and Mendocino County elections office.

Election results summary:

Measure N
ResultVotesPercentage
Defeatedd No61748.89%
Yes 645 51.11%

Text of measure

Ballot question

The question on the ballot:[1]

To continue the quality of education with funding that cannot be taken by the State; repair/replace leaky roofs; modernize outdated classrooms, restrooms and school facilities; repair aging plumbing systems; improve student access to computers and modern technology; upgrade electrical systems; and make health/safety improvements; shall the Southern Humboldt Joint Unified School District issue $10,000,000 of bonds at legal rates, have an independent citizens' oversight committee and have NO money used for salaries, with all funds staying local?[2]

Impartial analysis

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

A YES VOTE on Measure N would authorize the Southern Humboldt Joint Unified School District (the District) to issue and sell general obligation bonds up to a maximum of $10,000,000. The bonds will bear interest at a rate not to exceed the legal limit. The bonds are to be issued under the authority of the Government Code and the maximum duration of the bonds cannot exceed the legal limit. If approved, the issuance of bonds would be in accordance with the laws of the State of California.

The District may use the proceeds from the sale of bonds only to provide financing for the school facility, classroom repair, and renovation projects that are identified in the Bond Project List. As required by law, the Board of Trustees has certified that it has evaluated safety, class size reduction, enrollment growth, and information technology needs in developing the project list.

If the measure is approved and bonds are issued, the District is required by law to meet certain accountability requirements. To meet these requirements, Measure N requires that the Board of Trustees will establish accounts into which bond proceeds will be deposited, and that the Board of Trustees will annually conduct an independent performance audit as well as an independent financial audit of the proceeds from the sale. In addition the Board of Trustees will establish a Citizens’ Oversight Committee to assure that funds are expended only as specified on the projects listed in the measure.

The District has estimated that the tax rate levied to meet the debt service requirements of the bonds will not exceed $43 per year per $100,000 of assessed valuation of taxable property.

This Measure will not become effective, and the bond issuance and sale will not occur, unless the measure is approved by fifty-five percent (55%) of the registered voters voting on the measure. [2]

—Humboldt County Counsel[1]

Tax statement

The following tax statement was prepared for Measure N by the superintendent of the district:[1]

An election will be held in the Southern Humboldt Joint Unified School District (the “District”) on June 3, 2014 to authorize the sale of $10,000,000 in general obligation bonds. The following information is submitted in compliance with Sections 9400-9404 of the California Elections Code.

The best estimate of the tax rate that would be required to fund this bond issue during the first fiscal year after the sale of the first series of bonds, based on estimated assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, is $.0430 per $100 ($43.00 per $100,000) of assessed valuation in fiscal year 2014-15.

The best estimate of the tax rate that would be required to fund this bond issue during the first fiscal year after the sale of the last series of bonds, based on estimated assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, is $.0430 per $100 ($43.00 per $100,000) of assessed valuation in fiscal year 2016-17.

The best estimate of the highest tax rate that would be required to fund this bond issue, based on estimated assessed valuations available at the time of filing this statement, is $.0430 per $100 ($43.00 per $100,000) of assessed valuation. These estimates are based on projections derived from information obtained from official sources. The actual tax rates and the years in which they will apply may vary depending on the timing of bond sales, the amount of bonds sold at each sale and actual increases in assessed valuations. The timing of the bond sales and the amount of bonds sold at any given time will be determined by the needs of the District. Actual assessed valuations will depend upon the amount and value of taxable property within the District as determined in the assessment and the equalization process. [2]

—Catherine Scott, superintendent of the Humboldt Joint Unified School District[1]

Support

Supporters

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

  • Ron Olsen, business owner
  • Garth Epling, owner of Emerald Tech.
  • Tammy Harrison, branch manager of North Valley Bank
  • David Katz, business person
  • Beatrice Anderson, retired business person

Arguments in favor

Official arguments

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

In June 2010, Southern Humboldt Joint Unified School District voters overwhelmingly passed a general obligation bond to improve our community’s schools.

Since that time, tremendous improvements have been made in repairing and rehabilitating our children’s schools and classrooms.

But much remains to be done. Measure N will allow the District to access its remaining funds sooner and at a cheaper cost. By voting YES on Measure N, we can finish the job of improving our local public schools while at the same time SAVING MILLIONS OF TAXPAYER DOLLARS.

Here’s how: Measure N makes financial sense and has taxpayer protections in place:

  • The District can borrow at much lower interest rates, saving taxpayers millions of dollars in interest.
  • Iron-clad restrictions that money can only be spent on improving Southern Humboldt’s schools. No funds can be spent on salaries, pensions, or benefits.
  • Annual review of all expenditures by an independent citizens’ oversight committee.
  • Legally required annual audits.
  • All Measure N funds MUST be used to improve our children’s schools and CANNOT BE TAKEN AWAY BY THE STATE AND SPENT ELSEWHERE!

Measure N will let Southern Humboldt JUSD continue the job of fixing and upgrading our schools by:

  • Repairing or replacing leaky roofs
  • Modernizing outdated classrooms, restrooms, and school facilities
  • Repairing aging plumbing and sewer systems
  • Improving student access to computers and up-to-date modern technology
  • Making health, safety and handicapped accessibility (ADA) improvements

Our local schools are our most important assets and should be our number one priority. Measure N will improve our community’s schools, help improve housing values, stimulate our local economy, improve our facilities for today’s students and save taxpayers millions of dollars in interest.

That’s something we can all support. Please join us and VOTE YES ON MEASURE N! [2]

—Ron Olsen, Garth Epling, Tammy Harrison, David Katz and Beatrice Anderson[1]

Opposition

No official arguments were submitted in opposition to Measure N. If you have an argument that you would like to see posted here, please email the Local Ballot Measure Project staff writer.

See also

External links

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References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Humboldt County Elections office, Humboldt County, June 3, 2014 sample ballot information, accessed May 8, 2014
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.