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November 6, 2018 — California General Election
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Special District

ABC Unified School District
Measure BB - 55% Approval Required

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Election Results


18,021 votes yes (58.35%)

12,863 votes no (41.65%)

100% of precincts reporting (55/55).

To improve student safety/campus security/intruder-protection systems, construct and upgrade classrooms, science labs, and school facilities that support college readiness and career training in math, science, engineering, technology, arts, and skilled trades, and keep instructional technology up-to-date, shall ABC Unified School District issue $258,000,000 in bonds at legal rates, levying 5 cents/$100 assessed value for 29 years ($15,500,000) to improve our schools, with citizen oversight, independent audits and all money locally controlled?

What is this proposal?

Measure Details — Official information about this measure

Impartial analysis / Proposal

Mary C. Wickham, County Counsel

Approval of Measure BB (“Measure”) would authorize the Board of Education (“Board”) of the ABC Unified School District (“District”), which placed the Measure on the ballot by Resolution No. 18-03, to issue general obligation bonds in an amount not to exceed $258,000,000.

Proceeds from the sale of bonds authorized by the Measure shall be used only for the purposes specified in the Measure to modernize, repair, and replace existing school facilities. Projects include, but are not limited to, upgrading school libraries; renovating and/or adding campus bathrooms; upgrading and/or replacing shade structures; upgrading school main office; renovating or adding multi-purpose rooms; renovating and/or constructing classrooms; upgrading computer and science labs, playground surfaces and equipment, plumbing and electrical systems, and technology infrastructure; replacing the oldest portable classrooms and acquiring new portable classrooms; upgrading facility disabled access; making seismic retrofits; improving energy efficiency; expanding and/or upgrading drop-off/pick-up access and parking facilities; replacing furnishings and equipment; and abating hazardous materials. Bond proceeds may not be expended on teacher or administrator salaries or other operating expenses but may be used to reimburse the District for the cost of work performed by staff on, or necessary and incidental to, bond projects.

The Board shall cause independent performance and financial audits to be conducted annually to ensure that bond proceeds are spent only for projects identified in the Measure. The Board shall appoint an independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee under Education Code section 15278 et seq. to ensure that bond proceeds are spent as specified in the Measure and as provided by law. The Board shall deposit bond proceeds in a special account and comply with statutory reporting requirements.

Bonds shall be issued and sold as current interest bonds and/or current interest term bonds and not as Capital Appreciation Bonds or bonds with a compounding interest feature. Bonds shall be issued in one or more series under any legal provision for issuance of general obligation bonds by school districts. The interest rate and maturity date on any bond shall not exceed the maximums allowed by law. According to the District’s Tax Rate Statement, the best estimate of the average annual tax rate required to fund the bonds, based on assessed valuations available when the District filed the statement, is $49.50 per $100,000 of assessed valuation. The best estimate of the highest tax rate required to fund the bonds is the same as the average tax rate. The final fiscal year the tax is estimated to be collected is 2047-48. The estimated total debt service required to be repaid if all bonds are issued and sold is $449 million, including principal and interest. Estimated tax rates are based on the assessed value of taxable property on official rolls, not on a property’s market value. Properties of taxpayers eligible for a property tax exemption, such as the homeowner’s exemption, will be taxed at a lower effective tax rate.

This Measure requires a fifty-five percent (55%) vote for passage.

Tax rate

An election will be held in the ABC Unified School District (the “District”) on November 6, 2018, to authorize the sale of up to $258,000,000 in bonds of the District to finance improvements to educational facilities as described in the measure. This measure will authorize a tax sufficient for payment of interest on, and redemption of, the bonds. If such bonds are authorized and sold, the principal thereof and the interest thereon are a general obligation of the District, payable from the proceeds of ad valorem taxes on taxable real property located within the District.

The following information is submitted in compliance with California Elections Code Sections 9401 through 9404 based on estimates of assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement:

(a) The best estimate from official sources of the average annual tax rate that would be required to be levied to fund the bond issue during the entire duration of the bond debt service (repayment of the bonds) based on estimated assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, which is a projection based on experience within the same jurisdiction or other demonstrable factors, is $0.0495 per $100 ($49.50 per $100,000) of assessed valuation. The final fiscal year in which such tax is anticipated to be collected is 2047-2048.

(b) The best estimate from official sources of the highest tax rate which would be required to be levied to fund the bond issue based on estimated assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, which is a projection based on experience within the same jurisdiction or other demonstrable factors, is $0.0495 per $100 ($49.50 per $100,000) of assessed valuation. It is estimated that this tax rate would apply in the 2019-20 fiscal year.

(c) The best estimate of the total debt service, including principal and interest, that would be required to be repaid if all the bonds are issued and sold is $449 million.
Voters should note that these estimated tax rates are based on the assessed value of taxable property within the District as shown on the official rolls of Los Angeles County, not on the property’s market value. In addition, taxpayers eligible for a property tax exemption, such as the homeowner’s exemption, will be taxed at a lower effective rate than described above. Actual future assessed valuation will depend upon the amount and value of taxable property within the District as determined by the Los Angeles County Assessor in the annual assessment and the equalization process. Property owners should consult their own property tax bills and/or tax advisors to determine their property’s assessed value and any applicable tax exemptions.

Attention of all voters is directed to the fact that these estimates are based on assumptions and projections derived from information currently available and obtained from official sources. The actual tax rates and the years in which they will apply may vary depending on the timing of any bond sales, the amount of bonds sold, the maturities of the bonds issued and sold, market interest rates at the time of each sale of bonds and actual assessed valuations over the term of repayment of the bonds. The figures provided above are estimations based on the factors noted herein and are not maximum limitations. The timing of the bond sales and the amount of bonds sold at any given time will be governed by the needs of the District. The actual interest rates at which the bonds will be sold will depend on the bond market at the time of each such sale. Actual future assessed valuation will depend upon the amount and value of taxable property within the District as determined by the Los Angeles County Assessor in the annual assessment and the equalization process.

ABC Unified School District

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against the ballot measure

Arguments FOR


Create a lasting, positive impact on the quality of our schools, neighborhoods and the value of our homes while still protecting taxpayers. Measure BB is a wise investment. Good schools improve the quality of life in our community and preserve the value of our homes.

ABC USD’s schools and classrooms have been well maintained over the years; however, these buildings have an average age of over 50 years! Our classrooms and schools require major upgrades and improvements not only to meet today’s technological, safety and educational standards but to avoid greater repair costs in the future.

Measure BB will ensure local students have access to the education, facilities, technology, and skills training they need to succeed.

Projects Include:
- Improving student safety and campus security systems including establishing a single point of entry, security fencing and security cameras.
- Providing classrooms, labs, and facilities needed to support high-quality instruction in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.
- Providing school facilities to support Career and Technical Education classes to prepare students for college and in-demand health sciences, engineering, technology, and skilled trade jobs.
- Upgrading older schools, so they meet the same academic and safety standards as newer schools.
- Keeping Instructional Technology up-to-date to ensure our students remain competitive.

Fiscally Responsible:
All money raised by Measure BB will be dedicated to safety upgrades, critical repairs and upgrades to our community schools. An independent citizen’s oversight committee will review all expenditures from the bond, and there will be publicly available annual independent audits of bond funds.

Our Students Deserve Your Vote:
There are more than 20,000 children in our school district. They need safe schools today to meet tomorrow’s challenges. They need your help.

For our students and our community, on November 6th, Vote YES on BB!

Former Mayor of Cerritos

Former ABC School Board President

Former ABC School Board President

Former Mayor of Cerritos

Current ABC Board Member

Arguments AGAINST

Yes, ABCUSD needs funding for capital improvements. However, this is a BAD BOND.

The Facilities Master Plan is incomplete!

ABCUSD authorized $60,000 to WLC Architects to assist the Facilities Committee in putting together a $258.73 million Facilities Master Plan. Board Policy requires that this Plan consider current and future trends in enrollment which very likely would lead to the consolidation of a few schools. This Plan did not consider enrollment. Why allocate funds for schools which should be CLOSED?

The Plan does not incorporate alternate funding!

The Facilities Committee recommended considering alternate funding sources to accelerate the implementation of the Plan. The District Chief Financial Officer stated that it was possible to find $31 million. Why doesn’t the Bond measure reflect this REDUCTION?

There are too many out-of-district students!

Student Enrollment in the District is DECLINING, with further decline expected. FIFTEEN PERCENT of the students enrolled in the District are out-of-district transfer students. Those families WILL NOT PAY the taxes but enjoy the benefits. This is not fair!

Costs include non-capital items!

The $258 million bond measure includes over $61 million for Classroom Furniture, Classroom Finishes, Playground Surfacing and Equipment, and Shade Shelter, which do not have a useful life as long as the Bonds.

Now, ABCUSD wants to pass a bond measure based on an incomplete Facilities Master Plan. If passed, we and our children will be paying a total debt of $448 million for 29 years.

District families CANNOT afford more taxes. We will still pay property taxes over $105 million through 2034 on 1997 bonds!

This Measure has ZERO protection for senior citizens living on fixed incomes. Seniors cannot “opt out” of this tax.

Join hardworking families, senior citizens and business owners and VOTE NO on this Measure!


Replies to Arguments FOR

Bond Measure BB is asking for too much.

In the Facilities Master Plan, Campus Security, Campus Technology, MPR/Gym, Lab/Media Centers, Portable Classroom Replacement, and Restroom Renovation are important, were estimated to cost over $175 million, are capital items, and should be funded by Measure BB. Classroom furniture, classroom finishes, office renovation, playground resurfacing/equipment, and shade shelter were estimated at over $82 million and should not be funded with this bond. The Measure should have been for $175 million, not $258 million.

ABCUSD has not been forthright.

On June 19 the Board approved a $110K contract to resurface playgrounds at three schools with deferred maintenance funds. Yet these projects are in the Facilities Master Plan on which this Bond Measure is based. Are we to pay for this and other projects which can be funded with deferred maintenance funds?

The District is ambiguous on the Specific Projects List.

This is a Proposition 39 bond measure which requires a Specific Projects List that voters can consider and a Citizens Oversight Committee can work with. Notice that near the end of Attachment 1, the District states that “inclusion of a project on the Bond Project List is not a guarantee that any specific project listed herein will be funded, completed or completed by a specific date.” Doesn’t this mean that the Specific Projects List is not specific?

Vote NO on Measure BB!


Replies to Arguments AGAINST

Vote YES on Measure BB

The ABCUSD Citizens Facilities Master Plan Committee determined that the facilities needs of the District require passing a bond. Only one person has filed an argument against Measure BB. However, in his argument against the measure, he agrees that ABCUSD needs this funding.

The District held over 20 meetings, open to the public, before finalizing the Plan. ABCUSD continues to listen and incorporate new information into future master plans.

District enrollment has fluctuated over the past ten years. Demographic changes may require increased utilization of the District’s buildings in the future. All District facilities should be maintained for future capacity increases.

Measure BB cannot cover all identified, high-priority needs of the District. Additional funding sources are being aggressively sought through grants, matching funds, public/private partnerships and donations.

Students who attend ABC schools, and live outside the District boundaries, generate funds from the State for the District. This money helps maintain the outstanding academic programs offered in ABC and makes us the only Exemplary District in the County.

The bond provides for non-capital items such as updating all classroom furniture and playground equipment. These items are recommended by the Facilities Committee and allowed by State law.

The excellence of ABC School District is a major reason homes in our District are valued higher than similar homes in nearby neighborhoods. Passing Measure BB is a significant way to maintain continued high home valuation in ABC. Great schools make great communities and enhance home values.

ABC School Board Clerk

ABCUSD School Board President

Chair of ABC Facilities Committee

ABCUSD Board Member

President, ABC Council of PTAs

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