This week Gov. Jerry Brown launched a media blitz supporting Proposition 30. If we can glean anything from the commercial breaks between the wall-to-wall coverage of Hurricane Sandy, Molly Munger has also stepped up her TV ad campaign for Prop 38. But a lot of other ballot measures that could have a big impact on education may glide under your radar screen.
Let’s get to them.
In Los Angeles County, 15 bond measures seek to benefit local schools. Districts are asking voters’ approval to borrow from $18 million to $385 million to repair leaky roofs, make seismic retrofits, modernize science labs, and construct new buildings. For the most part the districts with the greatest need aren't asking for the most money. It’s the opposite. The smaller the bond the more modest (and sometimes dire) the improvements seem to be. Um…asbestos removal?
Two ballot measures aim to renovate community colleges. El Camino and Cerritos Colleges want to raise $350 million for facility upgrades.
All these initiatives assure voters that bond money will be spent only in their districts and only on specific projects - not a penny to administrator and teacher salaries or pensions.
In the city of Bellflower, a 2% utility user tax for five years would direct a portion of revenues (we don’t know how much) to restore city services including drug, gang and bullying prevention/enforcement and afterschool programs. La Mirada wants a one-cent sales tax increase for five years. It would pay for after school programs for K-12 students.
Here’s a breakdown of the district bonds organized from lowest to highest:
- Little Lake City School District, Measures EE & TT: $18 million + $48/yr parcel tax levy for five years
- Westside Union Elementary School District, Measure WP & WR: $18.5 million + a $96/ yr parcel tax for four years
- Castaic Union Elementary School District, Measure QS: $51 million
- Whittier City Elementary School District, Measure Z: $55 million
- Lancaster Elementary School District, Measure L: $63 million
- Redondo Beach Unified School District Measure Q: $63 million
- Bellflower Unified School District, Measure BB: $79 million
- Inglewood Unified School District, Measure GG: $90 million
- Lynwood Unified School District, Measure K: $93 million
- Temple City Unified School District, Measure S: $128.8 million
- Covina-Valley Unified School District, Measure CC: $129 million
- Rowland Unified School District, Measure R: $158.8 million
- Palmdale Elementary School District, Measure DD: $220 million
- Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District, Measure ES: $385 million
- Local Classroom Funding Authority, Measure CL: 2¢/square foot parcel tax for residential property, and 7.5¢/square foot for other types of property (Revenue would be applied toward: Centinela Valley Union High School District, Hawthorne School District, Lawndale Elementary School District, Lennox School District, Wiseburn School District
Community College bonds:
- El Camino Community College, Measure E: $350 million
- Cerritos Community College, Measure G: $350 million
School related bonds:
- La Mirada Sales Tax Increase, Measure I: 1¢ sales tax for 5 years
- City of Bellflower Utility User Tax, Measure P: 2% increase in utility taxes for 5 years
How do you plan on voting on your local tax measure? Do you prefer these over the statewide intiatives such as Prop 30 and Prop 38?
Vanessa Romo can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter @vanromo.