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Learning The Hard Way – Citrus Community College and Its Giant Bond, a Curse for the Communities

citrus college bond

 

OP/ED Submitted by a Concerned Citizen

Not long ago, California’s brand spanking new Governor Newsom decided to launch Proposition 13, the largest statewide school bond measure in history asking voters to approve $15 Billion for public schools, community colleges, the University of California and the California State Universities.  The statewide education bond measure for $15 billion went out with a “tweet” of defeat.  Proposition 13 failed in March of 2020 (46% – 54%)!  State taxpayers saved well over $25 Billion in principal, interest, and costs of issuance.

The Board of Trustees of the Citrus Community College District just six months later have placed Measure Y on the ballot for approval to issue nearly $300 million in school bonds, providing an estimate to impose well over ½ a billion dollars in taxes on a handful of communities in the San Gabriel Valley including Arcadia, Azusa, Claremont, Duarte, Glendora, La Verne, Monrovia and San Dimas.  Citrus already has an operating budget of around $80 million annually, with 44 buildings and seven outdoor athletic facilities.  Citrus is the oldest community college in Los Angeles County, and the fifth oldest in California with several new buildings adorning its impressive campus (currently closed).

Under the rubric of an “Affordable Higher Education Measure,” the proponents of the measure including the Board intend to use the funds “to retain well-qualified teachers and improve the quality of education” by upgrading classrooms and facilities, providing water safety, creating resources of students and veterans preparing for university transfer and jobs, and to repair leaky roofs, remove mold and lead paint.”

Bond funds are for capital improvements, not more administrative, certificated, and classified employees and funds cannot be spent on them or student or veterans.  Bond funds are for facilities, not for people.

Considering the size of the San Gabriel Valley, and Governor Newsom’s request for $15 billion statewide, the Board, perhaps misled by special interests and misled by would be constructors with erector sets, would be patient during the midst of a pandemic and temper their request for the communities to pay out hundreds of millions in additional taxes totaling well over ½ a billion dollars when people are getting laid off and struggling to feed the family and make the rent.

Measure Y is combative in nature, especially during challenging times.  Fierce opposition to the authors of the ½ Billion in local taxes is expected.

 

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2 Responses to Learning The Hard Way – Citrus Community College and Its Giant Bond, a Curse for the Communities

  1. Robert Reply

    September 8, 2020 at 9:16 am

    Bonds are taxes no more taxes

  2. Kenneth Reply

    September 8, 2020 at 5:24 pm

    Vote NO Measure Y…

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