FERNDALE, Mich. — Residents in Ferndale Public Schools currently pay a 7-mill tax for school improvements that will expire in 2023, and now the school board plans to ask voters to extend that through the year 2042, according to The (Royal Oak) Daily Tribune.

School officials estimate that the extension would bring in $22.8 million, of which $5.2 million would go for asbestos removal, $5.4 million for mechanical upgrades in some buildings, including air conditioning, $3.3 million for technology, and the rest for other smaller projects, according to The Daily Tribune.

School board trustees said they want to get the measure on the ballot quickly, because the formula used to calculate revenue will be updated next spring to reflect a drop in property values locally, according to The Daily Tribune. That would lower the buying power of the bonds that the district intends to issue, The Daily Tribune reported.

Some residents also are concerned that the vote will be on the same ballot as the Republican presidential primary on Feb. 28, 2012, and that the primary will attract voters who are opposed to government spending, according to The Daily Tribune.

Stephanie Hall, the district’s spokesperson for the millage proposal, said that, “This is not a partisan matter; it’s about the future of our schools,” The Daily Tribune reported.

SOURCE:

The (Royal Oak) Daily Tribune, “Schools seek $22.8 million millage renewal,” Nov. 19, 2011

FURTHER READING:

Mackinac Center for Public Policy, “Common School Funding Myths,” Sept. 7, 2010

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