On a day that saw the introduction of one piece of legislation changing capital outlay, another exited.
Senate Bill 183, which would have lowered the percentage of supporting votes needed from 60 to 55 percent in elections on capital outlay certificates and bonds, failed to pass the Senate – dropping a 10-22 vote. ASBSD supported SB 183.
The bill’s prime sponsor, Sen. Jason Frerichs, said the change from 60 to 55 percent would not give away “the integrity of the system” when passing bond votes, but rather give schools “respect” for the work they put into moving forward with a bond to improve the district.
“We know (the vote) should be more than a majority…but yet we recognize they’re (school districts) going to have to push this effort very strong and gent plenty of support,” Sen. Frerichs said.
In a stark contrast to Sen. Frerichs’s thoughts on the percentage adjustment, Sen. Ried Holien said the bill “essentially…is making it easier to spend other people’s money.”
Sen. Al Solano said bond votes usually entail “committing long-term” taxpayer funding to projects and therefore should require a 3/5 vote to approve.
With SB 183 off the table, attention related to capital outlay turns to House Bill 1207, which revises certain provisions concerning the school district capital outlay fund tax levies, provides property tax opt-out procedures for the capital outlay levy and to revise the per student allocation.
Despite the defeat of SB 183, Sen. Frerichs astutely noted the “capital outlay issue is going to linger out there the entire session.”
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