Why seek a bond now?
The district has an opportunity to leverage money from other sources to help fund the bond projects. Baker School District has been awarded a $4 million OSCIM state matching grant, but we will only receive that money if the proposed bond measure is approved. In addition, the district would contribute $3 million from the Student Success Act funds and $2 million from capital project funds to help fund the bond projects.
Another consideration is that the cost of construction continues to increase. The cost of materials and labor has increased xx% since xxxx.
Did citizens have input into this proposal?
Yes, an 11-member citizen committee was formed to consider whether the district should try again after the November 2018 bond defeat. The committee reviewed the district’s long-range facilities plan and post-bond feedback collected from surveys and public meetings. The consensus was that a bond was needed to address ongoing enrollment and safety/security issues, but that the proposed measure should be smaller and shorter term than the previous proposal. The committee also advised remodeling existing spaces instead of new construction.
How would you assure good stewardship of bond dollars?
If the bond is approved, the District would convene a Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee to monitor the progress of the bond and ensure that projects are managed responsibly. That committee would report back to the School Board on a regular basis as a measure of accountability.
What considerations go into the cost?
Another consideration is that the cost of construction continues to increase, especially in today’s strong construction market. The cost of materials and labor has increased by approximately 7% since mid-2018.