In the upcoming March primary election, Beaumont-area voters will decide whether Beaumont Unified School District can sell bonds up to $98 million to renovate, upgrade and repair aging infrastructure and construct buildings, classrooms, and school labs.
The ballot measure, “Measure B,” was put forward by the Beaumont Unified School District Board of Trustees.
Measure B is separate from the state’s Proposition 13, which also seeks funding for schools. Local school districts must pass local school bonds in order to generate the matching funds required to get any of the state bond money. Unlike state bonds, local bonds always come with a tax hike, and, in the case of school bonds, it is always a property tax.
The measure states thatbonds may be used for school facilities projects such as modernizing classrooms, buildings and career-technical education facilities for science, technology, engineering, arts and math programs, and upgraded security and safety measures.
As enrollment in Beaumont increases, the projects to be financed with the bond also include the construction, site acquisition, equipping and furnishing of new schools.
According to the measure, the bonds would not be used to find the salaries, pensions or benefits of any board members, administrator, and/or teachers or for other school operating expenses.
If voters approve Measure B, the money that would pay back the principal and interest on the bonds would come from a tax rate added to property taxes.
The best estimate of the average annual tax rate at this time is approximately $0.05 for every $100 assessed value on a property, and would affect new homeowners in Banning’s upcoming Atwell development.
If a property were determined to be worth $100,000 the landowner would pay $50 with their annual property taxes.
Further, the median home value in Beaumont is $348,416, which would yield around $174 per annually per home in property taxes.
While bonds are outstanding an estimated $6 million will be raised and will be monitored annually with citizen oversight and independent financial and performance audits.
If the district sells all of the bonds, the school district would need to pay back close to $180 million to people and entities who purchased the bonds.
The final year the school district estimates the tax would be collected is expected to be 2049-2050.
Voting yes on the measure supports authorizing the district to issue $98 million in bonds to fund facility and technology improvements.
The district intends to apply for state matching funds for all eligible projects.
In the absence of such funding, the district may not be able to undertake some of the projects listed above.
A 55 percent supermajority vote is required for the approval of the measure.
Project list for the bond measure
The projects to be financed by the bonds include the construction, rehabilitation, acquisition, equipping and furnishing of the following existing schools and facilities:
Anna M. Hause Elementary School, Brookside Elementary School, Palm Innovation Academy, Starlight Elementary School, Sundance Elementary School, Three Rings Ranch Elementary School, Tournament Hills Elementary School, Mountain View Middle School, San Gorgonio Middle School, Beaumont High School, Glen View High School, 21st Century Learning Institute, Beaumont Adult School, District Educational Support and Transportation Facilities.
Editor Rachael Garcia may be reached by emailing email@example.com or calling (951) 849-4586 x 120.