Press Release: Ballotpedia releases annual school bond and tax report

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Over $22 billion in school bonds approved in 2012

Madison - January 15, 2013: Ballotpedia has published its annual local ballot measure report, covering school bond, tax, and budget votes held in 2012. The analysis includes 486 measures, seeking a total of more than $26 billion of school bonds in fourteen states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin. The total dollar amount approved was 84.04% of the more than $26 billion in bonds that was on the ballot.

Josh Altic, Ballotpedia's lead researcher for the report, found the contrast between the 2011 data and the 2012 figures to be particularly noteworthy. "2012 was a much bigger year for bond and tax measures all around. We saw more bond and tax measures being approved - and for larger amounts - than in 2011. Looking at school bonds alone, there was an increase of over 30% in the approval rates for school bond measures. In 2012, school districts in the 14 states we looked at asked for a collective $26 billion in bonds, when just last year that figure was slightly over $14.5 billion." Altic also noted that in 2012, the average amount of debt authorized by each bond question was almost 35% higher than the average amount approved in 2011.

Of the fourteen states, California - where voters approved 113 of the 140 measures - had the most school bonds on the ballot. Florida, with just one bond question, had the fewest. That one question in Florida, though, authorized $1.2 billion in bonds.

The complete analysis is available online.

About the Lucy Burns Institute
Ballotpedia is a project of the Lucy Burns Institute, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin. The mission of the Lucy Burns Institute is to empower people to engage in democracy by delivering exceptionally high quality information that is easy to access. Toward that end, LBI publishes Ballotpedia, Judgepedia, and Policypedia, online resources that equip voter with the facts about local, state, and federal politics and policy. Since the organization’s founding in December 2006, LBI’s online articles have received nearly 400 million page views.


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