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CCUSD planning for bond election

Staff Report~ 6/18/2014

CAVE CREEK – The Cave Creek Unified School District is planning to ask voters to approve a bond in the Nov. 4 election.
In a CCUSD governing board meeting on June 10, the governing board and district office staff discussed budgetary concerns. Two separate ballot items were considered: changing the list of capital projects that are authorized by voter approval and a special bond election.
The first ballot item would change how funds from the last bond election can be used.
“The law says that if we need to use the money for a purpose other than what was in the original pamphlet we can ask voters to repurpose the money,” said Dr. Kent Frison, Associate Superintendent of
Operations and Finance.
This ballot item would not affect voters monetarily, as it is repurposing funds CCUSD already has. Right now, the money, about 10 million dollars, can only be used for certain projects. This change would allow the district to repurpose the funds for a broader spectrum of use so the money can be spent where it is most needed. The governing board approved this measure unanimously, after reviewing the potential changes.
The second ballot item is a standard bond request.
“The district has specified various projects that the money would be used for, primarily for renovation for existing school buildings,” explained Frison.
“The funding source for this bond will be the secondary tax rate.”
This governing board approved the bond request, except for member Susan Clancy, who voted against it.
Lists of possible projects that these funds would be applied to were displayed at the meeting. School renovations and vehicle upkeep were two chief items.
Governing board member Susan Clancy objected to the lists of proposed projects
“This should have been a work-study for the board,” said Clancy, after viewing the proposed projects put forth by the bond committee. “This should be reflective of the absolute things that we need.”
Clancy wanted to include the list of projects on the ballot.
“We should try to stay as close to our list as we can.”
Board member Stephanie Reese disagreed, suggesting that CCUSD distribute a full list of everything that is needed, rather than just the proposed projects that would fit the budget.
“We don’t want to be too specific in case one of them (the ballot measures) passes and the other doesn’t and we realize we really need to address something else. We can offer it more as, ‘Among the many, many things we need, here are some highlights,’” Reese said.
Grouping the list into high-priority categories was difficult for the board, as many of the categories need to be prioritized.
“If you wanted to prioritize it, two or three times more than $10 million is high priority,” said board president Dave Schaefer.
The bond request ballot measure was approved 4-1, with some changes to the language of the measure.
See CCUSD 2014-15 budget details and governing board minutes at www.ccusd93.org.