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School bond too big a bite
At $154 million, the Sequim school board is asking approval for a huge amount of money, leading toward the billion-dollar state and federal level.
Sequim is not the California Silicon Valley where they pave the streets with million dollar bills! Having been involved in these types of projects, there is no way (even with outside project support), given the size and experience of the Sequim School District staff, that they can execute this magnitude of project in a COST-efficient and effective manner — they are simply not prepared to oversee, as the owners’ representative, a project of this magnitude and complexity. That is a matter of fact.
The board needs to return to the planning table and first, establish a long range plan setting individual priorities for each aspect of the total project, taking into consideration “necessary vs. nice.”
Then, this needs to be divided into phases over a reasonable period of years in a manner which can be efficiently and effectively managed and financed with smaller individual bond issues. It seems that, to some degree, the school district has not planned and performed appropriate professional maintenance to the facilities over the years for them to have gotten into the disrepair condition that they are in today.
Please overlook the emotional promotional sales and marketing effort by the school board and their vested-interest supporters which distorts facts. If anything, higher property taxes make homes less attractive with a lower property value as opposed to their statement of increased property value — this is just common sense.
If approved as proposed, this bond will substantially increase each and every homeowner’s property taxes by nearly 20 percent! Is this an amount that everyone can afford all at one time?
Approving a bond in this size will also significantly reduce the opportunity for approval for other bond needs of the community, such as a much-needed expansion of the library.
I urge a NO vote for this Sequim School Bond in the amount of $154,325,000. This needs to be replaced in a rational, logical, responsible and professional manner with a new proposal in phases which can be cost-effectively managed over a period of time.