Wake County puts $810M school bond on Oct. 8th ballot

mquillin@newsobserver.comJuly 15, 2013 

— Wake County voters will have a chance to vote Oct. 8 on whether they are willing to foot the bill for $810 million in bonds for new and renovated schools and other educational improvements over the next several years.

County Commissioners voted unanimously at their meeting Monday to go ahead with the bond referendum that, if approved, would provide the bulk of the money for nearly $940 million in projects. The money is intended to bring Wake County schools up to current standards and prepare for the expected influx of 20,000 additional students by 2018.

While there has been tension between the county commission and the Wake County school board, which asked for the bond referendum, the two boards are unanimous in their support of their bond referendum.

After the vote, Commission Chair Joe Bryan appeared satisfied with the outcome.

“Let’s get this done,” he said.

At a public hearing held before the commissioners’ vote, a half-dozen people spoke in support of the bond issue, including the leadership of a new citizens group formed to promote the bonds to the public. No one spoke against the referendum.

If approved, the new debt would require a property tax hike of 5.53 cents per $100 valuation. In Wake County, where the average assessed home value is $263,500, each household would see an additional $146 in taxes to pay off the debt.

The construction plan includes 11 new elementary schools, three new middle schools, two new high schools, six major renovations, land acquisition for future projects, upgrades to technology and security, equipment replacement and other items.

Quillin: 919-829-8989

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