School board votes on $259 million bond package Nov. 26
EVERETT - The Everett School District will ask voters in February to approve a $259 million construction and technology bond.
The top-dollar projects in the eight-year bond include a new half-sized high school and a new elementary school in south Everett.
North Middle School and Woodside Elementary School would get complete refurbishments under the bond package. Cascade and Jackson would get synthetic turf athletic fields for $2 million.
The Everett School Board is scheduled to vote on sending the bond package to voters at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 26 in the district’s newly opened administration building at 3900 Broadway.
A board majority is anticipated to approve issuing the bond.
A $259 million bond would pencil out to a tax rate of $3 per $1,000 in assessed home value for most of the years it’s active, which does not increase the overall district tax rate homeowners paid in 2013 for the expiring bond and levy.
The board has options that would increase the bond’s size to up to $361 million by adding more projects to the list. Two of the immediate options discussed at last week’s board meeting were renovating Everett High School’s cafeteria, where conditions are described as poor, and modernizing Cascade High School’s science building.
The new high school tops out at $89 million in 2018 dollars and would ease overcrowding at Cascade and Jackson high schools. The new school would fit about 750 students, half the size of a regular high school.
District documents suggest the district isn’t ready to determine whether to put the high school on fresh soil or to convert Gateway Middle School’s location.
A dominant share of parents supported the half-size high school approach in meetings earlier this year compared to expanding existing high schools.
The district’s expiring bond voters approved in 2006 asked for $199 million.
The district’s new $23 million administration building, which wasn’t part of the 2006 bond package, alienated some parents who said district dollars should focus on classrooms.
Building turf fields at Cascade and Jackson, which Cascade parents asked for in droves two years ago, may attract significant support.
The district also plans to ask voters to continue an expiring four-year education levy in the same February election. Levies fund classrooms, and bonds fund construction.
The levy would cost the average homeowner about $3.55 per $1,000 assessed home value during the four-year cycle. The annual rate changes each year.
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