Chamber encourages members to vote YES on the Springfield R-12 bond issue

Posted by Jeremy Elwood on Mar 02, 2017

The Chamber board of directors encourages members to support the Springfield Public Schools bond issue on the April 4 ballot. At its February meeting, the Chamber’s board of directors unanimously voted to support the bond issue, accepting the recommendation of the Chamber’s Local Issues Public Policy Task Force.

The Springfield R-12 School District is asking voters to put their financial support behind a master plan to construct new buildings and improve nearly all of the existing school buildings in the district. The first phase of the master plan will be implemented over the next six years and funded by the $189 million bond proposal.

If the 24-cent debt service levy (phased in over two years) is approved, residential real estate tax would increase by $45.60 per year on property with a market value of $100,000; real estate taxes would increase by $384 per year on commercial property with a market value of $500,000.

The school district cited several reasons for the timing of the bond issue:

  • Every student deserves a quality learning environment regardless of geography
  • Work environment impacts district ability to attract and retain quality teachers
  • SPS must be positioned to compete for students and educators
  • Investment in schools equal investment in the surrounding neighborhood
  • Value to taxpayers in protecting existing assets

The Chamber believes a strong school district is directly tied to the economic success of the region, and that the investment in schools is an investment in tomorrow’s workforce. The board felt the bond issue provided a long-term approach to improving facilities and protecting the district’s assets; board members believed timing was right for this proposal, with strong district leadership in place and a solid master plan to carry out.

The Chamber has long supported educational initiatives because of their importance in improving both the preparedness of our workforce and our economic success. Vote “yes” for this school bond proposal on April 4!

To learn more about the Facility Master Plan, visit the Springfield Public Schools website.

Related story: See who the Chamber endorses for Springfield City Council

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