Tuesday, October 14, 2008

La Opinión: SUPPORT EDUCATION – Vote Yes on Community College and LAUSD Bonds

La Opinión Editorial

October 14 - Los Angeles voters must decide on two local measures related to education funding, one on the community college system, and the other on the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). Both cases involve authorizing bond issues paid for with minor increases in property taxes.

Measure J seeks approval of $3.5 billion in bonds to be invested in technology for the area’s nine community colleges, following a detailed plan. The cost of the bonds will be paid for by tax increases of $17 for every $100,000 of assessed property value. Community colleges are a key part of education and professional training, and this proposal deserves our support.

Measure Q calls for an issue of $7 billion in bonds for the renovation, modernization, construction, and expansion of LAUSD school facilities. The investment to be made is not as detailed as Measure J, but it will be under the supervision of a Citizens’ Oversight Committee, including the presence of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce and taxpayers. It will be paid by the property tax already earmarked for the LAUSD, which would go from $123 to $185 per $100,000.

An attractive aspect of Measure Q is using $450 million for charter schools, although this fund would not be turned over directly to them.

Economic times are hard enough without increasing this kind of tax burden, but the investment in education is a necessary move with a solid return. For these reasons, we believe that both proposals should be supported. Vote YES on Measures J and Q!

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