Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Controversy over Measure H, community college construction tax

The Daily Journal/Michelle Durand, 10/14/14.  "College bond drawing new critical view:  Chancellor takes issue with vocal foe and says modernization needed."

bla, bla, bla, when do we get better information
"What is the mission of the San Mateo County Community College District? That answer is the crux of the debate over its $388 million bond measure on the Nov. 5 ballot with one camp — the district — saying the funds will be used to modernize its three campuses and put students in a better position to enter the workforce or transfer to a four-year university The other — represented by vocal opponent Maxine Terner — argues a two-year degree system needn’t spend millions of dollars on infrastructure like a new theater and gym. Instead, she said the district should focus on what happens inside the classroom and not spend lavishly on items not directly linked to teaching. Terner, a former San Mateo planning commissioner, learned of the bond measure too late to oppose it on the ballot, where the official opposition is from the Silicon Valley Taxpayers Association. 

With a large percentage of students requiring remedial classes or not transferring to other universities — Terner claims 70 percent of the first and less than 10 percent of the latter but Galatolo calls her numbers wrong — Terner said the district needs to prioritize actual learning over extravagant construction."

The district last passed a bond in 2005. That $468 million measure followed a $207 million bond in 2001. The district tried passing a $564 million bond in November 2011 but fell just shy of the 55 percent approval needed for passage. The half-billion figure was just too much, Galatolo said. This time, the bond works out to be $8.22 per $100,000 of assessed value. For a house with an assessed value of $400,000 in San Mateo County, the typical homeowner is looking at about $32 per year, Galatolo said."   Read more.

Related - Fix Pacifica reprint article - Daily News/Bonnie Eslinger 10/8/14, "$167,000 poured into campaign for San Mateo County Community College District bond measure."  Opposition organization mentioned in the article. Silicon Valley Taxpayers Association. 

Note photograph from The Economic Times/India. 

Posted by Kathy Meeh

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