Monday, June 22, 2009


LA Newspaper Group | Daily News Wire Services

Updated: 06/22/2009 02:26:02 PM PDT

The Los Angeles Unified School District's bond program continues to be viable even though it is being impacted by the current economic crisis, the LAUSD announced today.

Like most homes in Southern California, the assessed value of property within LAUSD is also declining, and that limits the ability to sell local bonds over the next few years, according to the district.

"No one is untouched by this economic crisis," LAUSD Superintendent Ramon C. Cortines said. "We have hit a hurdle, but still we have a plan in place to deliver on the district's commitment to enable every student to attend a neighborhood school operating on the traditional, September-June calendar instead of a year-round schedule by 2012."

In addition, the state has frozen voter-approved bond funds for the construction and modernization of schools for an indefinite period of time, according to the LAUSD, meaning that by fall the State will owe $1 billion of construction matching funds to the district.

But despite California's fiscal emergency and the freeze on state matching funds, the LAUSD has been able to continue with its bond program because of its ability to sell local bonds, according to the district.

"The current bond program will be completed for the students of Los Angeles," said Guy Mehula, LAUSD chief facilities executive. "In addition, we are exploring every funding and financing opportunity that would enable the district to undertake additional projects at our aging and deteriorating schools as early as possible, as well as creating much-needed jobs."

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