Eastmont School Board Sends $185 Million Bond Package to Voters
Voters in the Eastmont School District will decide whether to pass its biggest ever bond proposal in November.
The school board unanimously passed the measure during their Monday night meeting that would bring in $185 million and draw up to $50 million in matching funds.
New Eastmont Superintendent Becky Berg says it's highly important for the district to keep the faith of the residents.
"It's been my experience that the relationship of trust with the voters, following through, is perhaps the biggest piece, because if we don't, that carries on for generations of no voters," said Berg.
The bond would pay for all of the district's Phase 2 improvements, which include modernizing four elementary schools, additions to Eastmont High School and Sterling Junior High and a new Transportation Center.
It would cover expansion and renovation at Cascade, Kenroy, Lee and Rock Island Elementary Schools, as well as district-wide infrastructure and critical capital repairs and improvement. In addition, it would reduce or eliminate portables
Board member Steve Piccirillo says it's impossible to know if the money will actually be enough to complete all the projects in the Phase 2 plan.
"What we look at, what we think we're going to do, again, we don't know what we don't know, we can't know," said Piccirillo. "We think this will see us through to the successful completion of all projects."
Board members chose a bond package, which requires 60% approval from the voters, over a levy option that would require only 50% approval in part because a bond would generate more money while costing taxpayers less.
A capital improvements levy by the district ends this year, meaning if the bond were to go into effect starting in 2023 taxpayers would not see a $2.01 difference in their assessed property value rate year over year. Instead, a taxpayer would experience a net increase of about $0.63 per $1,000 assessed property value.
On a $400,000 home, it would amount to a little more than $5,000 over a 20 year period.
Featuring the bond proposal on the November 8th ballot will save the district considerably. It would cost the district $20,000 to add the proposal to the general election ballot, as opposed to $110,000 if it were put on a special election ballot.