News

Assembly OKs statewide schools bond for November ballot

Bill now moves to State Senate for consideration

The State Assembly unanimously passed a bill on May 29 that would place a statewide school facilities bond on the Nov. 4 general election ballot.

Assembly Bill 2235 -- authored by Assemblymembers Curt Hagman (R-Chino Hills) and Joan Buchanan (D- Alamo), whose district includes the San Ramon Valley -- authorizes a $9 billion general obligation bond that, if approved by voters, would provide $6 billion for the construction and rehabilitation of K-12 schools and $3 billion for higher education facilities.

The legislation now moves to the California State Senate for consideration.

"The last bond passed in 2006. Funds for the construction and modernization of K-12 and higher education institutions have been depleted for several years, jeopardizing the completion of many local projects. Passing a state bond will ensure that students attend safe and adequate facilities, positively impacting student achievement," Buchanan said.

State bond funds for K-12 facilities are managed by the School Facility Program, according to a statement from Buchanan issued May 29. The facility program requires a 50% local match for construction of new schools and 40% match for the modernization of schools.

State bond funds are matched more than 2-to-1 by local bond funds and developer fees. Local communities pass local bonds anticipating the state match, according to Buchanan.

"I spent a year reviewing the school facilities program, and it has proven to be one of the state's most successful partnerships. I am pleased that both parties recognize the critical need for a new bond to build and modernize educational facilities," Hagman added. "The bond also has the added benefit of aiding our economic recovery by creating tens of thousands of jobs and controlling the once volatile costs imposed on the construction of new residential units to fund school construction."

Bill supporters include the California Chamber of Commerce, State Building and Construction Trades Council, California State PTA, California Building Industry Association, and over 30 school districts and county offices of education and over 25 community colleges and districts.

Comments

Posted by Really?, a resident of Danville
on Jun 10, 2014 at 1:52 pm

You can put me down as a ** NO **


Posted by Rick Pshaw, a resident of Danville
on Jun 11, 2014 at 7:53 am

More jobs for teachers. Was that what you wanted?


Posted by Julia, a resident of Alamo
on Jun 11, 2014 at 10:14 am

I second the motion...put me down for NO also.

Thank you for listening, Julia Pardini from Alamo


Posted by Lee, a resident of Danville
on Jun 11, 2014 at 10:19 am

This is all about construction jobs for the unions!!! The unions run California AND the idiot politicians


Posted by spcwt, a resident of Danville
on Jun 11, 2014 at 10:19 am

The good news is Joan Buchanan is termed-out and can't run for re-election.

If you think your schools need to be improved, fine, support a local bond measure like the $260 million bond measure we passed in 2012 here in San Ramon Valley and many other school bonds in the recent past.

But a state bond that Buchanan wants is a bad idea. Buchanan wants us to send money to Sacramento so that big government can dole it out to the politically connected, to those it deems worthy, according to their rules. Her approach is basically, "Let us take your money so we can give a little bit of it back to you."

San Ramon Valley gets hosed by Sacramento big time. SRV only gets $7,841 per student. In contrast, school districts like Berkeley get $12,936 per student. Web Link

To make up the shortfall, SRV parents are expected to make donations, we also have local bond measures, school fundraisers, etc. SRV parents donate millions every year. That's in addition to the property & sales taxes we pay, not to mention state income tax. Sacramento takes much more from SRV than we get back. A state bond measure like this would exacerbate the problem.


Posted by Peter Kluget, a resident of Danville
on Jun 11, 2014 at 10:45 am

Because, really: who wants to make the state a better place for future generations? We've got ours, and why should we do like our parent's generation did and pay it forward for those ungrateful kids? I mean, they aren't even our own kids for the most part. Better to mouth meaningless soundbites complaining about unions, and teachers, and other people we don't personally know.

We should all be more like Julia Pardini: "I, me, mine. Screw the rest of you."

(P.S. spcwt, you should do a little homework about why SRVSD gets less cash than some others. It's got nothing to do with current politics, and is all about Prop. 13)


Posted by spcwt, a resident of Danville
on Jun 11, 2014 at 12:28 pm

Prop. 13 placed limits on property taxes and imposed a 2/3 majority requirement on tax increases. That's it. It has nothing to do with how Sacramento squanders cash on political favorites.

But thanks for playing.

By the way, do you have any more quotes from Anatole France that you could share with us? Very cool how you include that kind of stuff in your comments. It makes you sound super smart.


Posted by Peter Kluget, a resident of Danville
on Jun 12, 2014 at 9:41 am

spcwt, you are flaunting your ignorance. Do your homework.

The baseline allocation of funds per student in different districts was set immediately after Prop. 13 changed the way taxes were collected and allocated. Previously, school districts set their own property tax rates from which local schools were funded. After Prop. 13 froze property taxes at a statewide level baseline property tax proceeds went to Sacramento, then were sent back to local school districts according to a formula which addressed the demographics of each area. Back in the 1970s San Ramon Valley was a rural area, and its per-student reimbursement was set based on those demographics. That's why local schools get less per student than urban school districts. It hasn't changed since. It has nothing to do with "political favorites" and everything to do with Prop. 13 - which you would know if you had any idea what you were talking about.

I understand that you're "playing", spcwt. But you should acknowledge the fact that you are just shooting your mouth off without knowledge or thought when you post your ideologically screeds.


Posted by spcwt, a resident of Danville
on Jun 12, 2014 at 10:32 am

Wrong again Kluget.

It wasn't Prop. 13 that changed the way taxes were collected and allocated. It was the state legislature. The California Supreme Court made them do it. The court ruled in Serrano v. Priest that a property-tax based finance system for public schools was unconstitutional. Web Link The state legislature responded by capping the rate of local revenue that a school district could receive and distributed excess amounts to poor school districts. Prop. 13 had nothing to do with it. The state legislature can change the funding methodology whenever it wants. It was just a coincidence that Prop. 13 and the Serrano decision happened at the same time.

And guess what? The state legislature just changed the funding methodology again. Web Link The new methodology gives Orinda $10,416 per student. Beverly Hills gets $12,166. Meanwhile, SRVSD gets only $7,841. Web Link How is that fair?

Would you like your humble pie plain or with a side of ice cream?


Posted by Peter Kluget, a resident of Danville
on Jun 12, 2014 at 1:08 pm

spcwt, I congratulate you on doing enough homework to find that Serrano v.s Priest played a role, but you still need to hit the books a little more. SRVSD is what's called a "low wealth" district. Once you understand that you'll have made major strides.

You can start reading here: Web Link

Again, it has nothing to do with "political favorites" and everything to do with history - including Prop. 13.


Posted by spcwt, a resident of Danville
on Jun 12, 2014 at 1:31 pm

The link you cite proves my point. Second paragraph says the STATE LEGISLATURE established the funding formula that exists today in response to the Serrano v. Priest lawsuit. That's my point, it's the state legislature that chooses to allocate funds by a formula of its own making. Prop. 13 has nothing to do with it.

The State legislature could change the formula right now. Nothing is preventing that except politics.

The ice cream next to your humble pie has now melted.


Posted by Martha, a resident of Danville
on Jun 12, 2014 at 6:12 pm

spcwt is correct. It's the funding formula set by the legislature. This valley was still categorized as AGRICULTURAL. No one would really fight to get that changed - it was too hard; much easier to just keep adding on the local school bonds.


Posted by Ms. bunny, a resident of San Ramon
on Jun 13, 2014 at 7:20 am

OMG, they have GOT to be kidding...Seriously? An absolute, unequivocal "no" vote here and now. Certainly until "some day over the rainbow" they START SERIOUSLY accounting for ALL expenditures (-instead of wrapping them in others and hiding them "under the carpet")


Posted by Ms. bunny, a resident of San Ramon
on Jun 13, 2014 at 7:25 am

Seriously Peter, just HOW LONG have you lived in the San Ramon Valley not to be astutely aware of the lack of fiscal accountability of the San Ramon Unified School District? Honest to God. Since 1995 their failure to account for monies spent and assumption that we'll pass taxation like an "open checkbook" has plagued our city. C'mon guy. Do some homework here. The proverbial whine of "nimby" is NOT the case against them - it is their failure to audit appropriately and specious hiding of expenditures all along. You sir, as they say? "Are all wet" on this one!


Posted by Peter Kluget, a resident of Danville
on Jun 13, 2014 at 11:48 am

spcwt, the pathetic desperation of your attempts to find some way to blame what happened 40 years ago on "political connections" is just sad. A decision had to be made in the 1970s and it was. The basis for SRVUSD's classification (and corresponding share of the pie) was reasonable based on objective factors as things existed then.

Yes, the current legislature could change everything - but not just SRVUSD - every single district in the state. Of course, it wouldn't be pretty. Because of Prop. 13 it's a zero sum game. (If you think about that really hard you should be able to figure out why that is.) Every extra dollar SRVUSD got would be taken out of the pocket of some other school district. And then "political connections" would come to bear. But your assertion that the legislature "just changed the funding methodology again" was, again, simply wrong. The problem is that the Legislature is ***not*** doing that. They are leaving the allocation the same as it's been for 40 years.

The failure to change the formula every year isn't a matter of "political connections" as you asserted. It's due to the fact that changing it now would be an incredibly difficult fiscal issue due to the "zero-sum" problem. There's no guarantee that SRVUSD would get more money - we could end up "giving back" to Ripon or Glendora USD. I'm sure they have excellent arguments about why that should happen, too.

You've simply been wrong about your assumptions and accusations at every step. Making coy statements about pie and ice cream don't change that fact. You've just been searching desperately for excuses to justify your accusation of "political connections" being the cause of SRVUSD's per student allocation, in a typical knee-jerk right wing exaltation of simplistic ideology over reality.


Posted by spcwt, a resident of Danville
on Jun 13, 2014 at 12:50 pm

The melted ice cream is now dripping onto the floor. Ha ha.

Poor Kluget.

Hey buddy, I'm going to give you a quote by Anatole France since you had such a hard time coming up with one this time. I stole it from a website called BrainyQuotes.com in case you want to go get one for yourself. Feel free to use it the next time one of those typical right-wing knee jerks exalts some simplistic ideology. Use it against me! I don't mind. That would be funny.

Ok. Are you ready??

Here it is: "It is better to understand little than to misunderstand a lot." --Anatole France.

Ha ha. Isn't that a good one??!!

That would make such an awesome bumper sticker, wouldn't it?


Posted by No new bonds, a resident of Danville
on Jun 13, 2014 at 5:13 pm

I have had children in SRVUSD since 1995. We have been fighting since then to get a fair formula for allocation of funds per student to our district. The recent revision of the formula obviously is still grossly unfair---why should Berkeley and Orinda get so much more? It costs a lot more for teachers to live near SRVUSD schools than it does for them to live near Berkeley schools, for example. Presumbly textbooks are priced the same... Why should they get so much more??

I will be voting NO NO NO on that bond measure. The money will be doled out to every school district except ours. Facilities bonds should be done locally. We in the SRVUSDare paying for at least 2 right now! As someone as already said, the money will be doled out by Buchanan's Dem friends according to the political payola they get in return. Absolutely nauseating.


Posted by Peter Kluget, a resident of Danville
on Jun 16, 2014 at 2:14 pm

No new bonds, don't you just love it when your ideology aligns perfectly with an opportunity to keep a little extra money in your own pocket?

Oh, but I'm sure - you are motivated solely by the most noble and disinterested ideals, right?

spcwt, that is a nice quote. And now that you have graduated from misunderstanding literally everything on this subject to understanding a little, I'm sure you are very proud of yourself.

Gold star for spcwt!


Posted by Anne, a resident of Charlotte Wood Middle School
on Jun 16, 2014 at 11:01 pm

We are voting no no no no--voting often like dems. Buchanan wants it? Then hell no!


Posted by Peter Kluget, a resident of Danville
on Jun 17, 2014 at 9:01 am

Nothing like having people who believe propaganda-fueled urban legends vowing to use their "wisdom" to vote, Anne.


Posted by Anne, a resident of Charlotte Wood Middle School
on Jun 19, 2014 at 7:26 am

Nothing wrong with learning from the unwashed masses and voting often to cancel their votes!!


Posted by Peter Kluget, a resident of Danville
on Jun 19, 2014 at 9:18 am

Ahh, Anne: elitism and smug self-righteousness allied with ignorance and gullibility. The perfect soil for propagandists and spin doctors to sow the seeds of fear and suspicion. The right wing propaganda machine thrives on folks like you.


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