D200 Candidate information

LWV forum

Four Candidates appeared at the League of Women Voters CUSD School Board Candidate Forum.  Harold Lonks was out of town watching his daughter compete in the United States Figure Skating National Synchronized Ice Skating Novice Championships – They took 4th.

As you watch, notice, that there are no questions on finances or facilities – two topics that have been important in the community.

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D200 Citizen’s Advisory Council (CAC)

Last year a friend sent an email to D200, Her Question was:

Please provide me with the list of names of all of citizens on the citizens advisory committee as well as the meeting minutes from the past 12 months.  Since this is a citizens committee this information should be available on the website.
Please provide me with the reason why any taxpaying citizen should have to fill out an application to be on a citizens committee? 

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IL Legislation to close “Lease” to avoid referendum loophole

Wheaton’s state Rep, Amy Grant has submitted a bill, HB2145 and Palatine Rep. Thomas Morrison has submitted a bill, HB2738 (virtually the same), to close the “loophole” that district 200 tried to use to avoid the referendum for a new Jefferson pre-school building. Other districts have already done this, and we fear it may be catching on like wildfire. If school boards can build new facilities without referendum by signing a lease-to-own agreement, then issue debt service extension base (DSEB) Bonds, without a referendum to shore up their general revenues (raising future taxes to pay then back), we are in real trouble. Using the magic word “Lease should not void the clear intent of the original law that requires a referendum for new construction.

I submitted written comments (similar to this post) with my witness slip in support of HB2145.

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Proposal to save taxpayers $6.2M

[Open letter to] CUSD 200 Board members,

Congratulations, Wheaton-Warrenville District 200 voted to build a new Jefferson preschool without raising taxes.

D200 said it could fund the project from operating revenue.  So tell me, why is the district still planning to use 20-year “lease certificates,” which will cost the taxpayers $6.2M more than necessary?   These tax dollars should be paying for educating students and maintaining our buildings rather than funneling them to consultants and out of state lenders. Continue reading “Proposal to save taxpayers $6.2M”

School Bond Debt Drives Property Taxes

School districts need to keep borrowing so that they can spend today and tax tomorrow.  They think as long as they are not raising taxes much, we won’t notice.  But, we are paying attention.  When we approved the last referendums (Hubble, high schools…) those were to be paid off in 20 years – like a mortgage.  Instead, the school board has refinanced bonds to lower current payments and push the all-paid date out.  Then they borrow more – new, non-referendum bonds.  It is now more like a home equity line of credit that will never be paid off, so taxes will never go down.  Currently about 9% of our property tax bill pays for past school district borrowing.  If we STOP future bond issues our taxes will go down! Continue reading “School Bond Debt Drives Property Taxes”