Bond, mill levy questions for school district possible on ballot

Cassie Monroe
Posted

The possibility of adding a bond package and mill-levy increase question to the November ballot was discussed extensively at this month’s Jeffco Public School’s board meeting.

The effort has been lead mostly by Citizens for Jeffco Schools (CJS), a group of community members to generate revenue for the schools through a bond and mill levy.

CJS is a volunteer committee chaired by Jeffco parents Kelly Johnson and Joanna Levine. Hereford Percy, former school board president, also serves on the committee.

At the May 3 meeting, the committee told the school board that now is the time to ask voters for support because the district may see $45 million in cuts for the 2013-14 school year.

Steve Bell, chief operating officer for Jeffco Public Schools, said the board asked him to prepare ballot questions for a $39 million mill levy and a $99 million bond.

The money from the bond would be used for capital projects like buildings, repairs and renovations.

”Essentially the brick and mortar,” Bell said.

The mill-levy money would be for the general fund, specifically day-to-day operations and educational programs, maintenance, salaries and supplies.

The bond and levy amounts the board is requesting are subject to change, Bell said.

The board will have a full discussion on the issue at the next school board meeting, Thursday, June 7, board President Lesley Dahlkemper said.

”I think once we have the opportunity to sit down and really study the ballot language, we’ll have a better idea,” she said.

According to a press release from Jeffco Public Schools, the measures would cost the average Jeffco homeowner about $1.23 per month per $100,000 in home value.

The proposal was made to eliminate furlough days, maintain class sizes, save teachers’ jobs and programs like Outdoor Lab, and meet the district’s need for $585 million in building repairs.