Biggest question is how to sell it to voters if state backs out of its share of funding
By JESSICA CRAWFORD • Daily Leader
USD No. 480 met through the noon hour Monday to discuss options on how to present the $60.4 million bond issue to the public for district-wide renovations.
According to finance director Jerry Clay, the board has a decision to individually issue declarations promising to vote a certain way if the bond issue passes or they can collectively sign a resolution stating how they will go forward with the project.
“A resolution must be worded in a way where it won’t tie your hands in one way or another,” Clay explained to the board. “You have to be up front saying that you, as board members, will not raise the 8.21 mill levy but you don’t know how you will do it, yet.”
In order to not raise the mill levy, the board has the option of either extending the term of the bond to the maximum of 30 years or reducing the amount of the project.
According to all board members, the question on everyone’s mind is whether state aid will be available or not. If not, members are concerned the issue will not pass at all. However, they have no intention of giving up on what they feel is an investment in the future of the children of the district.
“This is not fluff, we need all of it,” board member Cliff Abbott said. “It will help AYP, drop out rate and help educate our kids.
“The kids that are in kindergarten, we can’t ask them to wait,” he added. “The kids that are in ninth grade, we can’t ask them to wait either.”
Board member Stacy Johnson felt if no state funding was available by the election date of April 7, the bonds could be held on to and not sold until state aid returns. The bonds, he said, were good for 10 years.
The board will meet again Monday, Feb. 9, to discuss further options.
The board will likely issue a resolution at sometime but must allow time for one to be drawn up.