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Lopez Island School District No. 144 Bond Measure (April 2013)

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A Lopez Island School District No. 144 Bond measure was defeated on the April 23, 2013, election ballot in San Juan County, which is in Washington.

If approved, this measure would have authorized the Lopez Island School District No. 144 to increase its debt by $15.5 million through issuing general obligation bonds in that amount, which bonds mature in at most 20 years, in order to fund the renovation, remodeling and improvement of school facilities. These bonds would have been payed through the levy of excess property taxes.[1]

Election results

San Juan County

Lopez Island SD Prop. 1
ResultVotesPercentage
Defeatedd No84857.81%
Yes 619 42.19%
These election results are from the San Juan County elections office

Text of measure

Language on the ballot:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

The Board of Directors approved Resolution No. 6:2012-2013 concerning this proposition for bonds. This proposition authorizes the District to issue $15,500,000 of general obligation bonds to renovate, remodel and improve the District campus and Decatur School; with bonds maturing within a maximum term of 20 years; and to levy excess property taxes annually to repay the bonds, as described in Resolution No. 6:2012-2013.

Should this proposition be:

APPROVED

REJECTED[1]

Explanatory statement

This is a statement provided by the San Juan County elections office:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

Passage of Proposition No. 1 will authorize Lopez Island School District (the "District") to borrow up to $15,500,000 by issuing general obligation bonds. The Board of Directors approved Resolution No. 6:2012-2013 authorizing this proposition. The bonds will pay for capital improvements to the Lopez School Campus and the Decatur School Campus.

Improvements at the Lopez School Campus will include the renovation and expansion of classrooms and learning spaces; renovation and remodel of locker rooms and other athletic facilities; installation of rainwater catchment and storage systems; upgrading irrigation systems for District athletic fields, landscaping and food gardens; creation of new art, music and culinary arts classrooms; creation of a new District maintenance and shop-learning space; new student services spaces including health room, administrative offices, and new weight and fitness room; replacement and upgrading of mechanical, plumbing, lighting and electrical systems; installation of Photo-voltaic solar panels and connection to appropriate electrical sources; renovation and improvement of district parking and exterior lighting; renovation and enhancement of district landscaping and building entrances; integration and upgrading electrical, fire alarm and communication systems, and security and controls; creation of a single dedicated bus loading zone; energy efficiency upgrades; removal of asbestos, if necessary; remodeling and renovation of district kitchen facilities; renovation and expansion of district multi-purpose room; renovation of classroom technology; addition of a connector hallway between East and West buildings; and upgrading athletic fields and playgrounds.

Improvements at the Decatur School Campus will include the renovation of classrooms, school building and grounds to enhance health, safety and education; and energy efficiency upgrades.

The cost of all necessary architectural, engineering, and other consulting services, inspection and testing, administrative and relocation expenses, on and off-site utilities, site acquisition, related improvement and other costs incurred in connection with the foregoing capital improvements are part of the costs of such improvements. The bonds would be repaid out of annual property tax levies over a period of not to exceed 20 years. The exact amount of such annual levies for these bonds would depend on the amount of principal paid each year and on the interest rates available at the time the bonds are sold.[1]

Support

Below are arguments in support of this measure:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

We support the bond – a huge opportunity that we can't pass up. The bond will help provide more and better learning to students, fix systems that need fixing, make the buildings safer, help the environment, reduce energy costs, and save money to go back into the classroom.

Our community is very supportive of our schools and we see this as a critical investment for Lopez and Decatur. The school is our biggest employer and generates over $2 million a year for our community. We are proud of the broad-based education our students get – strong academics, PE and athletics, the arts, farm-to-school, foreign travel, and vocational programs.

Yes, it's a big commitment, but the time is right! Interest rates are historically low and construction bidding is very competitive. This means we can be very efficient and do it less expensively than we will ever be able to again. The cost to taxpayers is $0.68/$1,000, or $25 per month for the owner of a $400,000 home. Our school taxes will still be less expensive than half the school districts in this state, for an average homeowner.

We ask for your continued support. Join us in voting Yes for Lopez![1]

These arguments were prepared and submitted by Yes for Lopez Committee:

  • Jim Ghiglione: Lopez community member
  • Larry Berg: Coach, parent, Lopez teacher
  • Lexi Taylor: Chair of "Yes for Lopez Committee"
For more information: www.yesforlopez.org

Opposition

Below are arguments in opposition to this measure:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

Passage of the Lopez bond will cost property owners at least $68 more per $100,000 assessed value for the next 20 years, or $5,500 more taxes per average homeowner. None of this expense is for salaries, it’s all for building and ground renovation.

This costly project will not guarantee better student grade outcomes. For example, the States Office of Superintendent Report Card shows Lopez math scores 20 percent below Orcas and San Juan schools even though the current year budget expenses are much higher per student then the other island schools. The annual cost per Lopez student is over $23,000, whereas Orcas and San Juan are less than $14,000. This bond measure would increase the student cost by $5,000. See www.k12.wa.us/safs/reports.asp to verify these figures.

Voters of Lopez just approved additional tax levies for Fire and Solid Waste which will appear on next years tax bill. The growing burden of these taxes on all of us, especially those with fixed incomes, is becoming evident. Perhaps its time to exercise some critical thought on what this bond is really buying and what it will cost to maintain in the future. Now is not the time for a major tax increase.[1]

These arguments were prepared and submitted by Lopez School Facts Committee:

  • Joe Thornton: Chair, retired Hospice and Home Care CFO
  • Dr. Kenneth R. Sinibaldi: Concerned citizen
  • Dan Kovac: Youth coach, retired postmaster, 37-year resident
For more information: nolopezbond@gmail.com

See also

External links

References