Cedar Falls residents will decide Tuesday whether to back a $35 million bond issue that would help increase elementary school capacity.
The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports (http://bit.ly/1HpIGNg ) the district wants to expand Orchard Hill and North Cedar elementary schools while also building a seventh elementary school.
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If it is approved, the bond issue would add $1.38 of taxes per every $1,000 of taxable value over the next 20 years. For a $150,000 home, that would add $112.61 to the annual tax bill.
The district is working to balance the need for more space against residents' concerns about their tax bills.
"They need to do something here, for sure," said Mark Newton, who lives across the street from Orchard Hill Elementary. But, he added, "I don't want to see my property taxes go up substantially."
Last year, voters rejected a $118 million bond issue that would have also raised money for a new high school. District officials crafted the current smaller proposal after a series of community meetings.
"What we really have done since last September's bond referendum is listen to our people," said Superintendent Andy Pattee.
But a group of residents concerned about school spending is opposing the bond issue. Organizer Larry Wyckoff said he's upset that district officials say they will come back with another high school bond issue next year if this one prevails.
"There is need to do something at the schools, but not at $35 million. It's an absurd amount of money," Wyckoff said.
Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, http://www.wcfcourier.com