On Tuesday, November 5th, Mecklenburg County voters will be asked to approve a bond package consisting of $290 million for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) and $210 million for Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC).
CMS will use the money to fund 17 projects that will relieve overcrowding, offer more academic options for students, and renovate, replace and improve existing facilities. CPCC’s portion will fund ten projects that will expand and modernize its facilities, provide technical training space, and add instructional classrooms and labs.
REBIC and the Charlotte Regional REALTOR® Association support the bond referendum as an essential way to raise much-needed capital that CMS and CPCC need to keep pace with Mecklenburg County’s growth. We recognize that a strong public school system forms the backbone of a cohesive, forward-thinking community.
When we invest in schools, we create stable neighborhoods, which in turn attract businesses and talent to our area. When we attract more business our economy grows and the entire community benefits from a higher quality of life. A few commonly asked questions about the Referendum are:
Q: If the bonds win approval, will my tax rate increase as a result? A: No. There will be no tax rate increase related to this bond vote. The Mecklenburg County finance office has stated that current county revenue projections indicate a tax increase will not be needed to fund the projects in the CMS and CPCC bond packages if approved by voters. Q: How were the 2013 school bond projects chosen? A: CMS and CPCC staff considered a range of factors including school capacity, facility condition indices, project type, new program needs, and health and safety impacts. Mecklenburg County staff put these factors into a matrix, which ultimately awarded each project a priority score. The entire list of capital needs was then ranked by score. The highest scoring projects are included in the bond request. Q: Will the 2013 bonds request cover all CMS and CPCC construction and renovation needs? A: No. The 2013 bond request will only cover 17 of CMS’ most pressing capital projects and 10 of CPCC’s. CMS’ $290 million request is only part of the district’s $1.8 billion 10-year capital need. CPCC’s $210 million request is only part of the college’s projected facility needs of $430 million. Q: Can bond money be used to pay teacher salaries or other operating expenses? A: No. By law, bond funds cannot be used to pay for teacher salaries or any other operating expenses. Bond funds can only be used for capital projects. That said, the needs of our students, families and community are real. Satisfying those needs requires bond funding to support the many capital needs of the district as well as operating funding to support the increasing operating needs of the district including pay raises for teachers. It’s not one or the other – it’s one AND the other. Q: Voters approved school bonds in 2007. Why does the county need more money now? A: The 2007 school bonds will be fully expended approximately within the next 18 months. The bonds on this year’s ballot are designated for an entirely new and different list of projects that will need to happen over the next several years.
We ask you to get to the polls on Tuesday, November 5th and VOTE YES on the referendum. Your vote will help fund the education capital improvements that Mecklenburg County needs to remain an attractive place to live and work.
If you would like a FREE Bond Referendum Yard Sign, stop by the Realtor® Store at 1201 Greenwood Cliff TODAY!!
To learn more about the bond referendum and associated capital projects, please visit www.VoteYesForBonds.com.