Issue 111 - A Homeowner's Perspective
I have lived in my home since November 2003 and I have always supported the schools. When they asked for new elementary schools, I voted yes. When they asked for a new operating levy, I voted yes. I did this because I felt it would be good for the city despite the fact that I send my child to a private school. I believed that a better learning environment would help improve student performance. I believed that new schools would help improve the property values. I believed that my investment in the schools would be a positive investment in the city overall.
In reality, what we have is a school system that continues to fail. Our property values have failed to rebound. Our city has failed to set aside the necessary funds to address basic needs, such as feeding our senior citizens.
In addition to these failures, I have learned that the schools have managed to accumulate a surplus between $2,000,000 and $3,000,000, but the students have outdated books.
As a homeowner, my house is a part of my wealth. Since I purchased my home, my property value has declined by 23%, but my property taxes have increased by 55%. I'm paying a lot more for much less.
On November 8th, I will be voting against Issue 111. I believe the school board has to figure out a way to work within its means. I believe the school board must work in collaboration with the city and recognize that the success of a city is not solely based on schools. I believe that the school board needs to admit that luxurious buildings are not the answer for failing performance and a dwindling tax base. As a homeowner, I am just taxed out. The schools need to find a better solution.