As the June 5 Primary draws near, volunteers at a small office in Covina are making phone calls to residents, urging them to vote for Charter Oak Unified School District’s $47 million general obligation bond.
Alex Parslow, Chair of the Measure CO Campaign For Kids, said more than 60 percent of the people they have called so far in their campaign have favored Measure CO, more than the required 55 percent of the total votes to pass on Election Day.
Voters within the school district, which covers parts of Glendora, Covina and San Dimas, will decide on the approximately 40-year bond intended to cover upgrades and improvements to classrooms and facilities of the district’s eight school campuses.
The bond will be based on interest rates and assessd values, with the district projecting the highest tax rate based on a projection of assessed valuation at $60 per $100,000 for fiscal year 2019-2020.
The last Measure C bond, was a $30 million bond passed in 2000.
“When the new bond passes, the payment for this bond will be less than in Measure C. The actual tax rate will be decreased from what they’re currently paying,” said Superintendent Mike Hendricks. “It’s a new bond, but it’s as if we’re extending from the old bond but at a lower rate.”
A Facilities Master Plan, a blueprint of $58 milion worth of planned projects under the new bond, was completed in March. ADA compliance and other updates to safety codes remains the top priority among the projects. According to the district, the bond will also update classroom computers and labs, repair outdated classrooms, libraries and other facilities and increase energy and operational efficiency.
At Charter Oak High School, an in-demand As technology continues to progress at a rapid rate, the district plans to create “an endowment” with bond funds and use the interest to upgrade technology as it becomes outdated.
“That way we can replenish and update our technology over time,” said Hendricks.
While the bond can only be used specifically on upgrading classrooms and school facilities, district officials said the passage of the bond is critical for the future of campus and educational quality.
As the district faces a $441 per ADA cut if passage of the November tax initiatives don’t materialize, funding for most of these facilities projects would be nearly impossible, said chief business officer Kathy Perkins.
Measure CO is a Prop. 39 bond, and projects and transactions under the bond are monitored by a Citizen Oversight Committee established by the Board of Education.
For more information on Measure CO, call (626) 966-8331 or visit www.cousd.net.