Sees no need for facilities improvements

COURTESY TO THE BELLINGHAM HERALDOctober 25, 2013 

I am a life-long resident of Bellingham and parent of two small children. I have always supported school bonds, but I won't this time. Why? Because the school district is completely out of touch with the community's needs and values. They believe shiny new schools teach children not teachers, parents or programs. What would you do to improve education in Bellingham if you had $160 million? The district wants to spend all that, plus interest, on facilities. The median income in Bellingham is $37,990. Our cost of living is significantly higher than state and national averages. If the bond passes, the owner of a $250,000 home would pay $347 in school bond taxes. For what? We get a new Sehome High School for a whopping $73 million. I attended Sehome. It is inconceivable to me we must spend $73 million to teach students there. Why must we spend $10 million for a new district office? Why did we close a perfectly functional Larrabee Elementary if we must spend $26 million to renovate Lowell and Happy Valley to accommodate the displaced students? Do we really need to spend $15 million for a new bus barn and athletic fields? I believe this bond is fiscal hubris and irresponsible allocation of public funds. If you agree this is a huge waste of precious education dollars, you must vote no.

Duncan Burns

Bellingham

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