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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
Smart Voter
Fresno County, CA November 4, 2008 Election
Measure B
Bond
Central Unified School District

Needs 55% to pass

Pass: 12065 / 63.40% Yes votes ...... 6965 / 36.60% No votes

See Also: Index of all Measures

Information shown below: Impartial Analysis | Arguments | Tax Rate Statement | Full Text

To replace outdated heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems to improve energy efficiency; upgrade classroom computers and technology; replace again portables; renovate restrooms; improve student safety and school security; acquire property; buildclassrooms and schools to reduce overcrowding; and qualify the District to receive and estimated $75,000,000 in State matching funds, shall the Central Unified School District issue $152,000,000 in bonds at lowest possible interest rates with annual audits, independent citizens' oversight, and no money for administrators' salaries.

Impartial Analysis from the County Counsel
Voter approval of this measure will authorize the governing board of the Central Unified School District to issue and sell bonds in the maximum amount of One Hundred Fifty Two Million Dollars ($152,000,000), bearing interest at legal rates. The bond proceeds will be used to replace outdated heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems to improve energy efficiency; to upgrade classroom computers and technology; to replace aging portables; to renovate restrooms; to improve student safety and school security; acquire property; and to build classrooms and schools to reduce overcrowding; may make the District eligible to receive up to Seventy Five Million Dollars ($75,000,000) in state matching funds; and will be subject to annual audits and independent citizen's oversight, but will not be used for administrator's salaries.

s/ Janelle E. Kelley
Interim County Counsel

 
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Arguments For Measure B Arguments Against Measure B
Our schools are the most important assets in our community and should be our number one priority. From higher achieving students to greater safety to improved property values, quality schools make a difference. While our teachers and staff do their best in educating our students, many classrooms and school facilities in the Central Unified School District are severely overcrowded, outdated, and inadequate to provide students with the education they need to succeed.

While facilities have been improved and maintained over the years, new schools must be built to relieve student overcrowding and many classrooms and facilities need major upgrades and improvements so they can reflect today's safety, technological, and educational standards.

Your YES vote on Measure B will create a lasting, positive impact on the quality of our schools, neighborhoods and values of our homes.

Measure B will improve classrooms and school facilities throughout the District by:

  • Constructing new schools to reduce student overcrowding
  • Replace outdated heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems
  • Making health and safety upgrades, including replacing fire alarm systems
  • Upgrading outdated and deteriorating electrical, plumbing, and sewer systems
  • Constructing permanent classrooms to replace temporary outdated portable classrooms

By law, Measure B has taxpayer protections in place.

  • Passing Measure B will qualify Central Unified to receive up to $75.0 million in matching state funds
  • All spending will be annually audited and reviewed by an independent citizens' oversight committee
  • Funds can only be spent to improve our schools and not for teacher or administrative salaries

Measure B deserves our support. It will not only maintain the quality of our schools, but also maintain the quality of our community and improve property values and that's something we can all support. Please join us and VOTE YES ON MEASURE B!

s/ Curtis Rindlisbacher
Parent/Attorney

s/ Blong Xiong
Council President, City of Fresno

s/ Randy Rocca
Farmer/Businessperson/Parent

s/ Julia Shields
Parent/Businessperson

s/ Cherie Smith
Parent/Businessperson

Rebuttal to Arguments For
Why are we asking you to VOTE NO on Measure B? Measure B is the same proposal that voters rejected in June. Back then, it was called Measure E.

Why are we concerned?

  • THEY SAY no funds will be spent on administrative salaries.
  • THEY DON'T TELL YOU that before the last bond measure campaign began, the School administrator was given a $35,000.00 pay raise.

We said DEVELOPERS SHOULD BE RESPONSIBLE for overcrowding and the need for new schools.

  • THEY SAY the District currently requires developers to pay the maximum fees allowed by law.
  • THEY DON'T TELL YOU that when the Central School Board voted to raise developer fees by 55 cents per square foot at their May 13, 2008 meeting, it was also stated that should the bond measure pass, DEVELOPER FEES WOULD BE LOWERED by $1.73 per square foot ONE DAY AFTER THE ELECTION.

The school board by its actions, told Developers that if the bond measure passes their developer fees would be lowered, saving them MILLIONS of DOLLARS, SHIFTING THE BURDEN TO THE TAXPAYERS.

  • THEY DIDN'T TELL YOU who funded their last campaign.

Public documents on file with the Fresno County Elections Office show that special interest groups gave most all of the $127,000.00 donated to promote the last bond measure. That included Developers, out of town Lawyers, Builders, and the Bond Underwriter Company.

We support our schools and teachers, but we need responsibility in our district.

VOTE NO on Measure B.

s/ Randy Cervelli

s/ Dean Foglio

s/ Elaine Long

s/ Keith Koligian

In the June primary election, Central Unified School District voters rejected and defeated Bond Measure E, a $152 million proposal that would've been paid off by raising your property taxes.

Now, JUST FIVE MONTHS LATER, the politicians and bureaucrats are back again, putting the same measure on the November ballot but this time they've changed the name to Measure B.

Many of us had legitimate questions and concerns about Measure E.

Board members and administrators were asked:

  • In these uncertain economic times, are all of the projects necessary?

They acknowledged that the economy may have been a factor contributing to Measure E's defeat, but they were not willing to come back with a more reasonable proposal at a lower dollar amount addressing the real needs of the school district.

If you look at the full text of Measure B you will find that many of the projects have nothing to do with addressing school overcrowding, school security or classroom technology.

Four years ago, we supported and passed Measure K. That bond cost $40 million and would "complete various improvements at all schools including updating technology infrastructure" and "build three new schools to accommodate further growth".

  • Measure B will cost taxpayers nearly four times more than Measure K, on top of all other tax increases.

Many of us are life long Central residents with children or grandchildren in the District. We care about our schools and community. We have supported the school in the past but it is irresponsible to ask for more than what is truly needed.

We need to send the school board and administrators a loud and clear message. Let's have accountability first. VOTE NO on Measure B.

s/ Randy Cervelli

s/ Larry Diel

s/ Dean Foglio

s/ Elaine Long

Rebuttal to Arguments Against
Do not be misled by the "Argument against Measure B". Here are the facts:

FACT #1: Each and every Measure B project is critically needed. In fact, the State has found our classrooms to be so overcrowded and outdated, that they've made us eligible for $75 million in State grants so long as we pass a local bond to provide a match. If we ignore our student's safety, technology upgrade needs, and overcrowded schools, they will just cost more in the future.

FACT #2: Measure B makes financial sense and is good for our local economy. Measure B keeps our tax dollars in our community, increases job opportunities, boosts local revenues, and helps maintain property values.

FACT #3: Measure B funds will be carefully spent and monitored. By law, an independent citizens' oversight committee is required to oversee all expenditures, as well as annual performance and financial audits.

FACT #4: Measure B is affordable. The tax rate will be capped with the average homeowner estimated to pay less than $10 per month.

FACT #5: Measure B is widely supported throughout the District. Ask your friends and neighbors. Measure B has been endorsed by some of the most respected and knowledgeable members of our community including peace officers, farmers, businessmen and women, teachers, union members, and firefighters.

Measure B is a wise investment in our children's future as well as a major boost to our local economy.

Please join us in voting YES on Measure B.

s/ Devon Kizirian
Foundation for Central Schools, Chair / Parent

s/ Jeff Harrington
Executive Director Highway City Community Development

s/ Steve M. Amaro
Central Football Quarterback Club - President

s/ David Scarabello
Farmer, Resident

s/ Daniel Ronquillo
Foundation for Central Schools

Tax Rate Statement
An election will be held in the Central Unified School District (the "District") on November 4, 2008, to authorize the sale of up to $152,000,000 in bonds of the District to finance school facilities as described in the measure. If such bonds are authorized and sold, principal and interest on the bonds will be payable from the proceeds of tax levies made upon the taxable property in the District. The following information is provided in compliance with Sections 9400-9404 of the Elections Code of the State of California. Such information is based upon the best estimates and projections presently available from official sources, upon experience within the District, and other demonstrable factors.

Based upon the foregoing and projections of the District's assessed valuation, and assuming the entire debt service will be paid through property taxation:

1. The best estimate of the tax rate which would be required to be levied 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 $.0600 per $100 ($60.00 per $100,000) of assessed value for the fiscal year 2009-2010.

2. The best estimate of the tax rate which would be required to be levied to fund this bond issue during the first fiscal year after the sale of the last series of bonds, based on estimated assessed valuations at the time of filing of this statement, is $.0600 per $100 ($60.00 per $100,000) of assessed value for the fiscal year 2020-2021.

3. The best estimate of the highest tax rate which would be required to be levied to fund this bond issue, based on estimated assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, is $.0600 per $100 ($60.00 per $100,000) of assessed value in fiscal year 2009-2010 and thereafter.

Voters should note the estimated tax rate is based on the ASSESSED VALUE of taxable property on the County's official tax rolls, not on the property's market value. In addition, taxpayers eligible for a property tax exemption, such as the homeowner's exemption, will be taxed at a lower effective tax rate than described above. Certain taxpayers may also be eligible to postpone payment of taxes. Property owners should consult their own property tax bills and tax advisors to determine their property's assessed value and any applicable tax exemptions.

The attention of all voters is directed to the fact that the foregoing information is based upon projections and estimates only, which are not binding upon the District. The actual tax rates and the years in which they will apply may vary from those presently estimated, due to variations from these estimates in the timing of bond sales, the amount of bonds sold and market interest rates at the time of each sale, and actual assessed valuations over the term of repayment of the bonds. The date of sale and the amount of bonds sold at any given time will be determined by the District based on need for construction funds and other factors. The actual interest rates at which the bonds will be sold will depend on the bond market at the time of sale. Actual future assessed valuations will depend upon the amount and value of taxable property within the District as determined by the County Assessor in the annual assessment and the equalization process.

s/ Michael Berg
Assistant Superintendent

Central Unified School

Full Text of Measure B
"To replace outdated heating/ventilation/air conditioning systems to improve energy efficiency; upgrade classroom computers and technology; replace aging portables; renovate restrooms; improve student safety and school security; acquire property; build classrooms and schools to reduce overcrowding and qualify the District to receive an estimated $75,000,000 in State matching funds, shall the Central Unified School District issue $152,000,000 in bonds at lowest possible interest rates with annual audits, independent citizens' oversight, and no money for administrators' salaries?"

As required by the California Constitution, the proceeds from the sale of the bonds will be used only for the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation or replacement of school facilities, including the furnishing and equipping of school facilities, or the acquisition or lease of real property for school facilities, and not for any other purpose, such as teacher and administrator salaries and other school operating expenses.

Central Unified School District
Bond Project List

The District intends to complete the following projects, using a combination of bond funding and other anticipated sources, including State matching funds.

The Central Unified School District will use bond funds for the following school facility projects:

All School and District Sites
Improve instructional technology / campus security / communications systems
Act in accordance with accessibility and code compliance regulations

New Schools

Acquire, construct, equip and furnish two new elementary schools, one middle and one high school on property previously acquired by the District or to be acquired, including all related site improvements and facilities.

Biola-Pershing Elementary School

Renovate Library Media Center
Construct multipurpose building
Install/upgrade school security fencing and gates
Improve/expand physical education playfields, hardcourts and sidewalks
Install drinking fountains
Provide new sound system
Improve student drop off/expand school parking

Harvest Elementary School

Improve physical education playfields
Provide marquee signage
Enhance school parking lot security

Herndon-Barstow Elementary School

Renovate Library Media Center
Construct multipurpose building
Provide potable water to kindergarten wing
Upgrade/provide additional restrooms
Improve/expand physical education playfields
Expand/renovate student support spaces

Houghton-Kearney Elementary School

Renovate Library Media Center
Construct new cafeteria
Upgrade restrooms
Improve campus security lighting
Improve/expand physical education playfields
Improve student drop off/school parking
Repair hardcourt surfaces
Provide irrigation system

Norman Liddell Elementary School

Renovate/reconfigure Library
Improve school security lighting
Improve/expand physical education playfields, hardcourts and shade structure
Improve school parking lot
Provide marquee signage and sound system
Enhance classroom and school exteriors

Madison Elementary School

Construct Library Media Center
Upgrade restrooms
Upgrade communications system
Renovate cafeteria
Improve/expand student drop off, school parking
Expand student support spaces
Improve/expand physical education playfields/athletic facilities
Expand student support spaces

McKinley Elementary School

Enhance classroom and school exteriors
Upgrade heating/ventilation and air conditioning systems
Expand student support spaces
Upgrade restrooms
Improve/expand student drop off, school parking
Improve/expand physical education playfields
Provide drinking fountains
Improve/expand hardcourt surfaces
Upgrade communications system
Provide irrigation system
Renovate cafeteria

James K. Polk Elementary School

Provide additional portable classroom
Improve/expand physical education/athletic playfields and equipment
Improve/expand student drop off, school parking
Provide shade structures

River Bluff Elementary

Improve/expand physical education playfields
Provide shade structures
Upgrade communications systems
Provide marquee signage
Improve/expand student drop off, school parking

Roosevelt Elementary School

Renovate/replace portable classrooms
Renovate Library Media Center
Upgrade heating/ventilation and air conditioning systems
Upgrade restrooms
Expand student support spaces
Improve/expand student drop off, school parking
Improve/expand physical education playfields/athletic facilities
Improve/expand hardcourt surfaces
Add equipment storage space

William Saroyan Elementary School

Renovate/replace portable classrooms .
Upgrade heating/ventilation and air conditioning systems
Improve school parking lot security
Provide drinking fountains
Improve campus security at school office entrance

John Steinbeck Elementary School

Upgrade heating/ventilation and air conditioning systems in portable classrooms
Improve campus security lighting
Improve campus security at school office entrance
Renovate library and computer lab
Provide shade structures
Improve/expand physical education playfields/athletic facilities

Teague Elementary School

Renovate/replace portable classrooms
Upgrade restrooms
Improve/expand physical education playfields/athletic facilities
Provide irrigation system
Expand student support spaces
Add equipment storage space
Improve parking lot and campus security
Improve/expand hardcourt surfaces

El Capitan Middle School

Renovate/replace/relocate portable classrooms
Add permanent classrooms
Upgrade restrooms
Improve campus security lighting
Reconfigure campus layout
Upgrade irrigation system
Improve/expand physical education/athletic facilities
Improve/expand hardcourt surfaces

Rio Vista Middle School

Expand/enhance multipurpose room
Expand school parking
Improve/expand physical education/athletic facilities
Enhance parking lot security
Improve campus hardscape

Central High School East Campus

Construct gymnasium
Improve campus security lighting
Enhance campus appearance
Improve/expand student drop off, school parking

Central High School West Campus

Renovate classrooms
Provide new classrooms, labs and cafeteria/kitchen
Renovate/replace portable classrooms
Upgrade heating/ventilation and air conditioning systems
Enhance campus safety/appearance
Improve campus security
Improve/expand physical education/athletic facilities
Improve/expand student drop off, school parking
Renovate/expand student support spaces
Upgrade irrigation system
Upgrade communications system
Reconfigure campus structures library/cafeteria/classrooms
Reconstruct and relocate tennis courts

Central Learning Adult School Site (CLASS)

Improve campus security
Enhance campus appearance
Improve/expand school parking lot
Construct teaching lab building

Pathways Community Day School

Construct new facility

Pershing Continuation High School

Construct new facility

District Service Center

Construct new facility
Provide compressed natural gas fueling station for school buses

Acquisition of various capital projects at the Deran Koligian Educational Complex and at Central High West Campus previously financed with 2007 Certificates of Participation.

These projects may include participation in the State Facility Program's Joint- Use Program to gain matching funds for joint-use libraries, multi-purpose rooms and child care, teacher education and other eligible facilities included as part of the projects identified above. The bond funds authorized by this Measure may be used to pay part or all of the local share needed to qualify such facilities for special State matching funds under the State Facility Program's Joint-Use Program requirements.

The District's Board of Trustees has evaluated safety, class size reduction and information technology needs in developing the foregoing list.

The District's Board of Trustees will conduct an annual, independent performance audit to ensure that the funds have been expended only on the project list set forth above.

The District's Board of Trustees will conduct an annual, independent financial audit of the proceeds from the sale of the Bonds until all of those proceeds have been expended for the school facilities projects.

Pursuant to Section 15772 of the Education Code, the District's Board of Trustees will appoint a citizens' oversight committee and conduct annual independent audits to assure that funds are spent only on school and classroom improvements and for no other purposes.

Approval of Measure B does not guarantee that the proposed project or projects in the Central Unified School District that are the subject of bonds under Measure B will be funded beyond the local revenues generated by Measure B. The District's proposal for the project or projects assumes the receipt of matching state funds, which could be subject to appropriation by the Legislature or approval of a statewide bond measure.


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Created: January 24, 2009 10:32 PST
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