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Healdsburg Unified School District
55% Approval Required
Pass: 2,790 / 61.4% Yes votes ...... 1,756 / 38.6% No votes
Index of all Measures
|Results as of Jul 12 3:14pm, 100.0% of Precincts Reporting (21/21)|
|Information shown below: Impartial Analysis | Arguments | Tax Rate Statement | Full Text|
Without increasing current tax rates, to improve the quality of education at Healdsburg High and Healdsburg Junior High, repair leaky roofs, improve student access to computers/modern technology, add science labs, lower energy costs by upgrading electrical/plumbing systems and installing solar panels, shall Healdsburg Unified School District acquire,construct,repair schools/sites/facilities/equipment by issuing $35,000,000 of bonds at legal interest rates, with independent citizens' oversight, no money for administrators nor be taken by the State?
Money raised by the sale of the bonds can be used only for the purposes and projects stated in the Measure. The Priority School Projects List is set forth in the Measure, and is published as part of the Measure in this ballot pamphlet. Examples of projects listed include but are not limited to repairing and replacing leaky roofs; replacing older heating, air conditioning, plumbing, ventilation, and electrical systems with code compliant, energy efficient systems; replacing wiring to meet current electrical codes; constructing additional science labs; upgrading and expanding classroom technology and instructional equipment; upgrading classrooms to meet fire and earthquake codes; and upgrading schools to meet handicap accessibility requirements. As required by state law, the measure prohibits using bond proceeds for school operating expenses or teacher and administrator salaries. The District's Board will establish the priority and order in which the projects will be completed.
If the measure is adopted, the District's Board will conduct annual, independent financial and performance audits to verify that expenditures are proper and projects are being completed. In addition, an Independent Citizens' Oversight Committee will be established within sixty days of the report of election results to the Board. The proceeds of the bonds will be maintained in a separate account in the County Treasury, and the District Superintendent is required to report to the Board annually on the status of projects undertaken and the amount of bond proceeds received and expended in that year. These requirements are set out in the "Fiscal Accountability" section of the Measure.
Within limits set by law, the District has the discretion to decide when to sell all or any portion of the bonds. The bonds may be issued and sold in series, at different times, as projects are undertaken. The bonds of any series must mature within 40 years of the date they are issued. The funds to repay the bonds would be raised by an increase in property taxes based upon the value of land and improvements in the District. The interest rate on the bonds would depend on the market rate at the time the bonds are sold. The rate cannot exceed the rate set by state law, currently 12 percent. The Tax Rate Statement prepared by the District Superintendent, which estimates the property tax levies required to pay off the bonds, follows this analysis. The tax rate is a projection, and could go up or down, depending on a number of factors including changes in assessed value of property in the District.
BRUCE D. GOLDSTEIN County Counsel By: s/ Kathleen Larocque Deputy County Counsel
|Arguments For Measure E||Arguments Against Measure E|
|Our schools are one of the most important assets in our community and should be our number one priority. From higher achieving students, to future job training, to
greater neighborhood safety, quality schools make a difference. Our teachers and staff do their best in educating our students, but many classrooms and school facilities in the Healdsburg Unified School District are old and inadequate to provide students with the school facilities they need to succeed.
Our students need your Yes vote on Measure E! While our facilities have been well maintained, our high school and junior high classrooms and facilities are outdated and do not meet 21st century safety, educational, and technological standards. It is critical that we invest in our schools now.
Without increasing the current tax rate, Measure E will provide funding to make critical facility improvements at Healdsburg high and junior high by: replacing leaky roofs; modernizing and renovating outdated classrooms, restrooms and school facilities; increasing student access to computers and modern technology; and upgrading inadequate electrical systems.
Measure E makes financial sense and protects taxpayers. Measure E raises funds needed to improve our schools without increasing the current tax rate and while assuring accountability. By law, spending must be reviewed and annually audited by an independent citizens' oversight committee; and all bond funds must be spent locally and cannot be taken by the state. In addition, funds can only be spent on lasting infrastructure improvements at our local high school and junior high, not for teacher or administrator salaries.
Measure E upgrades and renovates old and inadequate classrooms, improves the education of local students, and maintains the quality of our community. That's something we can all support. Please join us and vote Yes on Measure E!
s/ Barbara M. Pinney
Healdsburg Junior High Teacher
Don't be misled by claims that tax rates will not increase. Bond principal, interest, and fees paid the investment bankers must all be repaid and will be added to your tax bill.
It gets worse. Administrators want to borrow money today that will be repaid in 40 years. Money that will be used to purchase computers, solar panels and other equipment having useful lives well short of 40 years. Future generations will be making the payments on this equipment long after it has been depleted and replaced by yet more short-term equipment funded by yet more long-term borrowing. It's a vicious circle and our children pay for it.
Contrary to a common misunderstanding that we oppose all taxes and bonds, we in fact support districts that establish replacement reserve funds to avoid the need for future borrowing and tax increases. We are also receptive to bond funding when the maturity of the bond matches the useful lives of the improvements and equipment being made or acquired. Neither is the case here. Vote no on E.
SONOMA COUNTY TAXPAYERS' ASSOCIATION
|Bonds are loans and must be repaid just like your mortgage or car loan. But unlike those loans, bonds are repaid from higher taxes. Bonds are typically issued to facilitate
the acquisition of assets having an expected useful life equal to or exceeding the life of the loan. Bonds thus allow the borrower to spread the cost of the asset
over its expected useful life. But just as you would not take out a 30 year mortgage to buy a car, neither should the school district take out 25 and 40 year bonds to finance
equipment (computers and other technology) and improvements (solar panels and updated electrical and plumbing systems) that have useful lives well short of forty years. Doing so only places on our children and grandchildren the burden of
paying tomorrow for assets that will have long since been sent to the landfill.
Further, the fact that a roof and other major building components do not last forever should surprise no one. Providing for a sound roof, functioning heating system and other elements of the physical plant should be every bit as much a part of the annual budgeting as staff salaries and utility bills. Because roofs are not replaced every year, a portion of the replacement cost should be placed in a dedicated replacement reserve fund each year so that funds are available when needed. Without an adequately funded reserve only three things can happen - and they are all bad - the District must either defer maintenance, divert funds intended for educational programs to building maintenance, or raise taxes (issue bonds).
Using bonds to fund the acquisition of short shelf-life items and failing to maintain an adequate reserve simply passes on to future generations the bill for today's needs. Vote no on Measure E.
SONOMA COUNTY TAXPAYERS' ASSOCIATION
Fact: Measure E will improve facilities and put more dollars into our classrooms without raising taxes. Measure E will not increase the annual tax rate that property owners are currently paying.
Fact: By law, the types of school improvements that are being proposed must, and will, be consistent with the term of the bonds. Measure E bonds will have 25-30 year terms, not 40 years as was inaccurately stated.
Fact: Dwindling State funding makes it impossible for the District to set aside adequate funds for major maintenance projects while providing for our students' educational needs in the classroom. The scope of these projects requires a significant investment, available only by passing a bond measure.
Don't take our word for it. Measure E has earned the wide support of local elected officials, civic leaders, families and business owners. They know that the tax deductible cost of Measure E is a small fraction of the increased property values good schools provide. Measure E is a cost-effective way to improve the quality of education and preserve property values, while providing students the excellent schools they need for their future success. Join us in Voting Yes on Measure E.
s/ Richard Bugarske
Small Business Owner
|Tax Rate Statement|
|An election will be held in the Healdsburg Unified School District (the "District") on June 5, 2012, to authorize the sale of up to $35,000,000 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 $0.00 per $100,000 of assessed value for the fiscal year 2012-2013.
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 $0.00 per $100,000 of assessed value for the fiscal year 2018-2019.
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 $46.50 per $100,000 of assessed value.
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/ Jeff Harding Superintendent Healdsburg Unified School District
|Full Text of Measure E|
PRIORITY SCHOOL PROJECTS LIST
The Board of Trustees of the Healdsburg Unified School District evaluated the District's urgent and critical facility needs, including safety issues, enrollment
trends, class size, class size reduction, and computer and information technology, in developing the scope of projects to be funded. The District conducted a facilities
evaluation reflected in the Master Planning Facilities Assessment accepted by the Board of Trustees on October 19, 2011 and incorporated herein by reference, and received public input and review in developing this Priority School Projects List. The Board concluded that if these needs are not addressed now, the problems will only become more pressing. Therefore, in approving this Project List, the Board of Trustees determines that the District should:
(i) Repair and replace leaky roofs for student safety and to reduce maintenance costs; (ii) Replace aging and broken heating, plumbing and electrical systems with solar technology and other upgrades to improve energy efficiency and invest the savings to improve the quality of education; (iii) Replace outdated portable classrooms with permanent classrooms to increase child safety and reduce energy expenses; (iv) Provide modern classroom technology and computers to support academic and job training programs; (v) Retain all bond money to be used in our local community and not be taken by the State; and (vi) NOT RAISE TAXES ABOVE CURRENT RATES.
School Renovation, Repair and Upgrades
Goal and Purpose: To provide adequate facilities for academic programs and to upgrade classroom technology and internet access, Healdsburg Junior High School and Healdsburg High School will benefit from the repair, upgrade of aging classrooms, and the acquisition of equipment, so that students have the resources they need to excel and be prepared for college and jobs in the real world when they graduate:
Goal and Purpose: Since good, safe and up-to-date schools help protect and improve local property values, schools will benefit from a variety of safety projects, and academic programs will benefit from the savings generated by energy efficient utility systems such as:
FISCAL ACCOUNTABILITY: IN ACCORDANCE WITH EDUCATION CODE SECTION 15272, THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES WILL APPOINT A CITIZENS' OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE AND CONDUCT ANNUAL INDEPENDENT AUDITS TO ASSURE THAT FUNDS ARE SPENT ONLY ON DISTRICT PROJECTS AND FOR NO OTHER PURPOSE. THE EXPENDITURE OF BOND MONEY ON THESE PROJECTS IS SUBJECT TO STRINGENT FINANCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY REQUIREMENTS. BY LAW, PERFORMANCE AND FINANCIAL AUDITS WILL BE PERFORMED ANNUALLY, AND ALL BOND EXPENDITURES WILL BE MONITORED BY AN INDEPENDENT CITIZENS' OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE TO ENSURE THAT FUNDS ARE SPENT AS PROMISED AND SPECIFIED. THE CITIZENS' OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE MUST INCLUDE, AMONG OTHERS, REPRESENTATION OF A BONA FIDE TAXPAYERS ASSOCIATION, A BUSINESS ORGANIZATION AND A SENIOR CITIZENS ORGANIZATION. NO DISTRICT EMPLOYEES OR VENDORS ARE ALLOWED TO SERVE ON THE CITIZENS' OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE.
NO ADMINISTRATOR SALARIES. PROCEEDS FROM THE SALE OF THE BONDS AUTHORIZED BY THIS PROPOSITION SHALL BE USED ONLY FOR THE ACQUISITION, CONSTRUCTION, RECONSTRUCTION, REHABILITATION, OR REPLACEMENT OF SCHOOL FACILITIES, INCLUDING THE FURNISHING AND EQUIPPING OF SCHOOL FACILITIES, AND NOT FOR ANY OTHER PURPOSE, INCLUDING TEACHER AND SCHOOL ADMINISTRATOR SALARIES AND OTHER OPERATING EXPENSES.