All registered voters, including Independents, may vote on the State High project funding Tuesday. If the referendum passes, the State College community will be assured that State College Area School District has the financial capacity to afford a much-needed update to the high school. In the future, our children will be in a more safe, secure school. Students will feel valued by the community, and we will celebrate as the second district in the state to approve a referendum.
The average homeowner’s tax increase would be $192 per year, $16 per month, or 50 cents per day (market value of $250,000). A 5.3 percent interest rate is assumed, and current rates are lower at 4.5 percent. This investment is for the entire campus, including storm-water mitigation (eliminate flooding), improved flow of traffic with access roads and bus parking, increased safety and security, an enhanced educational environment, and updated electrical, mechanical, HVAC and plumbing.
This long-term, comprehensive plan would enhance the learning environment for 30,000 students over the next 50 years. With an approved referendum, the district will have additional capacity to fund other needed capital projects (elementary schools) within the budget. SCASD has a pay-forward savings fund to assuage expected pension spikes. SCASD recent tax increases are among the lowest in history, and the millage is the lowest in the county. For years, the board has studied community input and planned a project with community consensus. Our house is in order, and the time is now. Vote Tuesday.
The writer is the president of the State College Area school board.