Voting “yes” for the school bond and mill levy isn’t just the right thing to do for kids in the Poudre School District, it’s the responsible and necessary thing to do for our growing community.
As the 2016 general election approaches, the citizens of Larimer County are going to be asked to approve an approximately $375 million bond to fund the Poudre School District’s future expansion plans. While at first glance this may seem like a lot of money to burden the taxpayers with, the great news is that due to Poudre School District’s great fiscal prudence and the expiration of the old bond, tax rates will not increase!
There are several reasons why the bond needs to pass. First, it is simply the responsible thing to do. Colorado is a very popular destination for citizens from all parts of the country. We all benefit from the influx of new citizens and also enjoy a beautiful place to live, but we need to provide the infrastructure to support our growing community. If we don’t build new schools, where are our new residents going to send their children to school?
Second, investing in education is a great investment for our community. When I pay taxes, I want to see a return on my investment. Although there are several taxes we pay as a small-business that seemingly have little to no positive effect other than to fund select bureaucracies, there are several taxes I pay that do return a tangible product, or help increase the viability of my community and, ultimately, my business. Taxes that fund roads, public spaces, parks, police and fire protection services directly benefit me. Similarly, a healthy, well-funded, school system directly benefits not only my community, but also my business by providing more jobs and businesses to the area and keeping citizens in town — not forcing them to commute 30 minutes each way to take their children to school.
Finally and most importantly — Colorado Schools are severely underfunded when compared to the rest of the nation, considering the overall wealth of our state. While it may not be immediately evident, as Northern Colorado is a fairly wealthy region and seems to have an expensive home on every corner, Colorado schools rank anywhere from 44th to 49th in funding. To me, this is an embarrassing statistic — especially since Colorado ranks 15th in the nation in per capita income. Bottom line is: we need to fund our public school systems and provide future students with great schools.
Voting “YES” on the school bond makes sense. The old bond is set to expire and voting for a new bond will have minimal-to-no impact on taxpayers. It is a tax that makes sense and will provide taxpayers with a tangible product that we can all benefit from for years to come.
Chad Zadina, DVM
Tabby Road Animal Hospital