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K-12 Finances: Good News in One State


By Dan Hounsell Maintenance & Operations
female student studying in old school

Maintenance and engineering managers — especially those in facilities that rely on public funding — face a constant struggle to keep their buildings maintained properly. But for one group of facilities in one state, results of the midterm elections offer a glimmer of much-needed hope.

The election results might still be in flux in parts of California, but on school spending, one trend is clear: Voters appear to have given a thumbs up to borrowing for local school improvements, with nearly $12 billion in new bond measures on track to being approved, according to Capital Public Radio.

About 80 percent of the local bond measures on the Nov. 6 ballot — 83 out of 105 — appear headed by toward approval, according to preliminary election results compiled by the League of California Cities.

Voters also appear to have approved harder-to-pass parcel taxes, which pay for classroom-related expenditures, in seven out of 12 school districts. A handful of measures remain close calls, so the projected outcomes in some ballot measures could change.

The volume of school finance measures on the ballot speaks to the ongoing need and popularity among school districts of using local bonds to pay for school facility construction and renovation, particularly as operating budgets are squeezed by payroll and pension obligations, according to the report.

This Quick Read was submitted by Dan Hounsell — dan.hounsell@tradepressmedia.com — editor-in-chief of Facility Maintenance Decisions, and chief editor of Facilitiesnet.com.

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