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Sebastopol Union School District
55% Approval Required
Pass: 2,869 / 70.1% Yes votes ...... 1,225 / 29.9% No votes
Index of all Measures
|Results as of Jul 12 3:14pm, 100.0% of Precincts Reporting (16/16)|
|Information shown below: Impartial Analysis | Arguments | Tax Rate Statement | Full Text|
To improve the quality of education; repair leaky roofs; improve energy efficiency by installing solar panels; repair deteriorating plumbing systems; improve student access to computers and modern technology; replace outdated HVAC systems; and renovate,repair,construct and/or upgrade classrooms,restrooms and school facilities; shall the Sebastopol Union School District issue $9,000,000 of bonds at legal interest rates, have an independent citizens' oversight committee and have no money used for administrative salaries or 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 Bond Project List is set forth in the Measure, and is published in this ballot pamphlet. Examples of projects listed include but are not limited to repairing and replacing leaky roofs; replacing older heating, air condi- tioning, plumbing, ventilation, and electrical systems with code compliant, energy efficient systems; installing solar panels to promote energy efficiency; improving student access to computers and modern technology; upgrading labs and other school facilities; constructing a multipurpose room at Brook Haven Middle School for school and community use; and upgrading schools to meet handicap accessi- bility requirements and current state safety codes. 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 annu- ally 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 "Accountability Requirements" 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
By: s/ Kathleen Larocque
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|Arguments For Measure H||Arguments Against Measure H|
|Everyone knows the importance and value of having quality schools. From higher achieving students, to higher home values, to greater neighborhood safety, quality schools make a difference. While our teachers and staff do their best in educating our children, many classrooms and school facilities in the Sebastopol Union School District are outdated and inadequate to provide local children with the school facilities they need to succeed.
Our children need your Yes vote on Measure H! While our facilities have been well maintained, our elementary school classrooms and facilities are outdated and do not meet 21st century standards. Measure H would allow the District to improve the quality of education provided to local children. Therefore, we must invest in our schools so they meet today's safety, technological, and educational standards.
Without increasing the current tax rate, Measure H will provide funding to make critical facility improvements at our elementary schools by: repairing or replacing leaky roofs; improving student access to computers and modern technology; replac- ing deteriorating plumbing systems; modernizing outdated classrooms, restrooms and school facilities; improving energy efficiency by installing solar panels; and replacing old heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems.
Measure H makes financial sense and protects taxpayers. Measure H raises funds needed to improve our schools without increasing the current tax rate. By law, spending must be reviewed and annually audited by an independent citizens' over- sight committee; and all bond funds must be spent locally and cannot be taken by the state. In addition, funds can only be spent to improve our local elementary schools, not for teacher or administrator salaries.
Measure H upgrades and renovates old and inadequate classrooms, improves the education of local children, and maintains the quality of our community. That's something we can all support. Please join us and vote Yes on Measure H!
s/ Jarold R. Warren
s/ Dennis E. Colthurst
s/ Eugene N. Nelson, Jr.
s/ Sara Morita-Gramm
s/ Teresa Ramondo
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 re- placed 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 equip- ment being made or acquired. Neither is the case here.
Vote no on H.
Sonoma County Taxpayers' Association
s/ Daniel A. Drummond, Executive Director
s/ Jack Atkin, President
|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 facil- itate 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 40 year bonds to finance equipment (computers and other technology) and improvements (solar panels and upgraded classrooms 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 educa- tional 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 H.
Sonoma County Taxpayers' Association
s/ Daniel A. Drummond, Executive Director
s/ Jack Atkin, President
Fact: Measure H puts more dollars into our classrooms without raising current tax rates.
Fact: By law, the types of school improvements that are being proposed must, and will, be consistent with the term of the bonds. Measure H bonds will have 25-30 year terms, not 40 years as was inaccurately stated.
Fact: The State requires the District to keep a deferred maintenance fund to deal with maintaining facilities, which it has done. Because the State continues to reduce funding for public education, local voters need to do more to protect the quality of education in our local public schools.
Don't take our word for it. Some of the most respected individuals and groups have reviewed Measure H and support it, including local elected officials, civic leaders, and business owners. They know that the tax deductible amount of Measure H is a small price to pay for the increased property values good schools provide. Measure H 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 H.
s/ Terence Kelley
s/ Michael Long Financial Planner
s/ Guy Wilson
s/ Deborah Drehmel
s/ Diana Gardner Rich
|Tax Rate Statement|
|An election will be held in the Sebastopol Union School District (the "District") on June 5, 2012, to authorize the sale of up to $9,000,000 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 available at the time of filing of this statement, is $0.00 per $100,000 of assessed value for the fiscal year 2017-2018.
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 $30.00 per $100,000 of assessed value for fiscal year 2025-26 and thereafter in each year that the bonds are scheduled to be outstanding.
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/ Liz Schott
|Full Text of Measure H|
By approval of this measure by at least 55 percent of the registered voters voting on the measure, the District will be authorized to issue and sell bonds of up to $9.0 million in aggregated principal at interest rates below the legal limit and to provide financing for the specific school facilities projects listed in the Bond Project List described below, subject to all the accountability requirements specified below.
The provisions in this section are specifically included in this measure in order that the voters and taxpayers in the District may be assured that their money will be spent wisely. Expenditures to address specific facilities needs of the District will be in compliance with the requirements of Article XIIIA, Section 1(b)(3), of the State Constitution and the Strict Accountability in Local School Construction Bonds Act of 2000 (codified at Education Code Sections 15264 and following.)
Evaluation of Needs. The School Board has identified detailed facilities needs of the District and has determined which projects to finance from a local bond at this time. The School Board hereby certifies that it has evaluated safety, class size reduction, enrollment growth, and information technology needs in developing the Bond Project List shown below.
Independent Citizens' Oversight Committee. The School Board shall establish an Independent Citizens' Oversight Committee, under Education Code Sections 15278 and following, to ensure bond proceeds are expended only on the school facilities projects listed below. The committee will be established within 60 days of the date when the results of the election appear in the minutes of the School Board.
Performance Audits. The School Board shall conduct an annual, independent performance audit to ensure that the bond proceeds have been expended only on the school facilities projects listed below.
Financial Audits. The School Board shall conduct an annual, independent finan- cial audit of the bond proceeds until all of those proceeds have been spent for the school facilities projects listed below.
Government Code Accountability Requirements. As required by Section 53410 of the Government Code, (1) the specific purpose of the bonds is set forth in this Full Text of the Measure, (2) the proceeds from the sale of the bonds will be used only for the purposes specified in this Measure, and not for any other purpose, (3) the proceeds of the bonds, when and if issued, will be deposited into a building fund to be held by the Sonoma County Treasurer, as required by the California Education Code, and (4) the Superintendent of the District shall cause an annual report to be filed with the Governing Board of the District annually, which report shall contain pertinent information regarding the amount of funds collected and expended, as well as the status of the projects listed in the Proposition, as required by Sections 53410 and 53411 of the Government Code.
NoTeacherorAdministratorSalaries. Proceedsfromthesaleofbondsauthorized by this measure shall be used only for the acquisition, construction, reconstruction and/or rehabilitation of school facilities, including the furnishing and equipping of school facilities and the payment and/or prepayment of school facility leases, and not for any other purpose, including teacher and administrator salaries and other school operating expenses.
BOND PROJECT LIST
The Bond Project List shown below is a part of the ballot measure and must be reproduced in any official document required to contain the full statement of the bond measure.
Evaluation of Needs. As required by Article XIII A of the California Constitution, the Governing Board of the District has certified that it has evaluated safety, class size reduction and information technology needs in developing the list of school facilities projects shown below.
Scope of ProjectsBond proceeds will be expended to modernize, replace, renovate, construct, equip, furnish and otherwise improve the facilities of the Sebastopol Union School District:
The specific school facilities projects to be funded include, but shall not be limited to:
School Facility and Classroom Repair and Renovation Projects