By NR Staff • 

Willamina, Sheridan bond measures defeated

Back to the drawing board for West Valley school districts

Bond measures in the Willamina and Sheridan school districts were soundly defeated Tuesday.

The Willamina district was proposing a $5 million bond. The cost per $1,000 of assessed valuation was being projected at 95 cents.

In unofficial returns, the measure was defeated 674 no votes to 543 yes, or 55.4 to 44.6 percent.

The Sheridan district was proposing a $2.1 million bond issue. Its projected $1.02 cost would have been fully offset through the refinancing of an existing debt.

In unofficial returns, the measure was being defeated 542 no votes to 485 yes, or 52.8 to 52.8 to 47.2 percent.

In Willamina, the money would have covered:

* Four new modular classrooms for the elementary school, replacing units dating back to 1978.

* A new ag, metalworking and woodworking shop with additional classroom space.

* New baseball and softball fields, including a field for use by the Tri-Cities Little League, along with bathrooms and a concession stand. The Little League gave the district money to help defray the cost.

* A lighted football field and covered stadium.

* Repair of track damage that has prevented the district from hosting meets for the last nine years. The current surface isn't even considered safe for community members who want to use the track for walking or jogging.

* Site improvements, furnishings and equipment for the above projects, along with underwriting costs.

By refinancing the bond issue that financed construction of Faulconer-Chapman School, the Sheridan School District was able to shave its tax rate by $1.02 per $1,000 of assessed valuation. That would have been enough to cover the entire cost of the bond it was proposing, keeping the local rate at $3.24, according to Superintendent Steve Sugg.

The money would have covered:

* Heating and ventilation repairs at the high school.

* Replacement of aging water lines districtwide.

* Replacement of old windows with more energy-efficient ones on both campuses.

* Installation of a new roof for the football stadium.

See Friday's print edition for additional information.




A lot of people are living on the edge of a financial cliff. Do I pay rent, buy food, what about utilities? It is not that they do not support education, they can't afford to pay for education. Go down to the food bank and see the line of people getting aid. What is sad is the small number of people that voted. 38% in Sheridan and 42% in Willamina, that is unacceptable.


More and more people are learning to vote no on bond issues because, more often than not, it raises their taxes.

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