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Seattle School District Current Expenses Tax Levy Renewal Proposition (February 2013)

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A Seattle School District Current Expenses Tax Levy Renewal Proposition was approved on the February 12, 2013 election ballot in King County, which is in Washington.

This proposition authorized the Seattle School District to impose a tax levy renewal of about $180 million per year for three years in order to fund educational programs and operations. Details about the amount of the tax can be found below.[1]

Election results

King County

Seattle School District Tax Prop. 1
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 100,506 75.17%
No33,20624.83%

Election results from King County Election Results Report.

Text of measure

Language on the ballot:

The Board of Directors of Seattle School District No. 1 requests approval of an operations levy for education, as set forth in Resolution No. 2012/13-3. This proposition authorizes the District to levy the following excess taxes, to replace an expiring levy and maintain current funding levels in order to support the District’s educational programs and operations, on all taxable property within the District:[2]


Collection Year: Approx. rate/$1,000 value Levy Amount
2014 $1.45 $167,200,000
2015 $1.55 $185,100,000
2016 $1.60 $199,600,000

Should this proposition be approved?[3]

Explanatory statement

The following statement is provided by King County as an explanation of this proposed tax:

Seattle Public Schools requests voter approval of an operations levy of $551.9 million in the aggregate for the three year period from 2014 to 2016. The proposed levy will replace an expiring levy.

Passage of Proposition No. 1 would allow the levy of taxes over a three year period to pay for the education programs and operations and to meet the education needs of the students attending District schools. The money in and to be paid into the General Fund of the District is insufficient to meet those needs without additional funds.

Programs and services to be funded by the levy include: 6th period classes at middle and high school levels; teachers and instructional assistants; textbooks and classroom supplies; bilingual and special education services; student transportation, security, maintenance and other operations; student activities, such as athletics, arts, extra-curricular and co-curricular activities; professional development and training.

The total amount to be collected will be $167.2 million in 2014, $185.1 million in 2015 and $199.6 million in 2016. The estimated levy rates per $1,000 of assessed value will range from $1.45 per one thousand for 2014 collections to $1.60 per one thousand for 2016 collections. The exact levy rate will be adjusted based upon the actual assessed value of the property within the District at the time of the levy.[1][2]

Support

Below is a statement posted by the County Elections Website in favor of this measure:

Please RENEW this essential Seattle Public Schools Operations Levy. Its passage is vital to the quality of education we are able to provide the more than 49,800 students currently enrolled – and the 7,000 additional students expected in the next ten years. A great city must have great public schools.

The Operations Levy replaces our current levy and provides every school with vital funding for day-to-day education needs that are not fully funded by the state. It accounts for 26% of the District’s operating budget. The Operations Levy helps pay for items such as teachers, a sixth period at high schools, supplies, bilingual and special education services, security, and student activities such as music and athletics. Without these funds, our children’s education will suffer – teachers and staff would be laid off, class sizes increased and important programs cut.

“Please vote to renew this levy! Without these resources it is hard to imagine how teachers can do their jobs. Thank you.” Carrie Kazala (Teacher, Eckstein Middle School)

This levy is not a new tax. It replaces the expiring Operations Levy. Please vote to renew our commitment to Seattle’s children.[1][2]

-Statement submitted by: Norm Rice, Lauren McGuire and Jeff Clark

Opposition

Below is a statement posted by the County Elections Website in opposition to this measure:

The Seattle School District’s enrollment rate continues to grow; yet the school district has continually used and mismanages many of the funds provided to them. Countless dollars are not being spent on repairs; schools are taking a loss in funds by selling school at losses only to reopen them.

In 2009 the school district was offered $9.7 million for the sales of Martin Luther King Elementary. When all was said and done they voted to sell it to a non-profit church for $2.3 million. This is lost money that could have provided much needed maintenance. Arbor Heights the oldest school in the district and the most in need of repairs is not even part of the money allotted in the levy. Now the school district is nearly $550 million in back repairs.

This mismanagement of funds is not helping our students. We need improvement in our schools. Do you as a voter want to see your tax dollars go down the drain?

Vote NO on the operations Levy[4][2]

-Statement submitted by: Nick Esparza

See also

External links

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 King County Website Information for Proposition 1
  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.
  3. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Wash
  4. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named WAHS