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Parcel Tax to Support Schools Fails at Polls

Measure K, the proposed $95-a-year parcel tax to benefit local schools, can't muster the two-thirds majority vote needed to pass.

Measure K, the proposed $95-a-year parcel tax on homeowners within the aimed at raising revenue for the schools, fell short of winning a required two-thirds majority vote for approval in Tuesday's election.

The ballot measure earned 3,747 votes in its favor, or 56.27 percent, but needed more than 67 percent to pass, according to the Los Angeles County Registrar. Just under 3,000 people voted in opposition, according to the registrar.

If it had been approved, the parcel tax for eight years for the school district, which has seen its budget cut by $10 million in the past four years, said Chief Business Official Karen Kimmel.

said funds generated by the parcel tax would have remained untaxed by state government, prevented future teacher and counselor layoffs and helped maintain property values.

"The Board [of Education] had the responsibility to 'ask' the community if they wished to pursue a parcel tax rather than face additional cuts and the majority of the community responded 'yes!' Said Superintendent Donald Zimring.  "Unfortunately, the state of the economy and low voter turnout kept the necessary two-thirds majority out of reach."

Opponents argued that they already citing a $98-a-year parcel tax passed in 2004 that has since been renewed.

"We are very pleased that voters turned out in this off-year election to defeat this unjustified tax," said Barbara Murphy, co-founder of Citizens Against New Local Taxes. "Now LVUSD will be forced to do what it should have done long ago, and that is to stop its excessive spending and start managing better, rather than keep asking taxpayers to pay even more taxes."

jo ann mondrus-eichelberger November 11, 2011 at 08:51 PM
Jeremy- Are you kidding? Calabasas kids suffer???? They wouldn't know suffer if it bit them! Nor would the kids from any of the schools out here. You can't put a label of negativity towards the teachers and the district, and say the community is not family focused. We have a total sends of community out here. Our passion towards this issues is proof of that. We totally support the schools. It's the greed we don't embrace. If anything, this is a wonderful lesson to learn not just for the school administration, but to the youth; Learning how to budget and stay within your means is a great lesson and life lasting. It's something that's quite obvious that has not been taught to many in our area.
Carol Elliott November 11, 2011 at 09:15 PM
That is blatant false information. At no time did Councilmember Martin ever suggest closing down the preschool and using it as a banquet facility. The preschool has been subsidized by the city taxpayers for several years to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars, and almost half of the children who attended were not even residents. Also the associated park is locked down and not accessible to city residents. To get the facts watch the discussion on item 8 at the July 13th Council meeting. http://calabasas.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=2&clip_id=3336
Rick Bowen November 11, 2011 at 09:40 PM
The District IS staying within its means. It was asking for a small amount from each of us to help keep teachers and programs (local money and local oversight as to how that money was to be used). Now without that money, they will still live within their means (but their means will be larger classes and fewer programs). The district asked for help. We failed to give that help. Now, we have to live with the consequences. Your kids will learn a lot with their 49 classmates needing the teacher’s attention too.
jo ann mondrus-eichelberger November 11, 2011 at 10:04 PM
The problem is, it KEEPS asking! We were asked in 2005 for a "temp" tax (measure E) Then it was extended. Then our regular property tax went up for the district (look at your property taxes from 2009 and the one recently received), and now an additional $95 for who knows how long. Credibility, my friend. We can not count on their word. Those asking also had a fund raiser not too long ago. A lot was sent in. I believe that went towards salaries? Well, here's the headline - we don't want to pay anymore. Especially for salaries. There are so many in this community alone that simply do not have anymore. They got pay cuts, they lost jobs, they are having a very hard time just staying afloat. If they are to pay for anyone's salary, it will be their own. The district has to re-direct now. With the invitation to those entering this school district that don't reside in this area and pay the taxes that we all pay, should come an invoice to help with all these costs that this measure so badly needs. That seems fair. That seems prudent. Start with those using this district. Understand you just can not keep taking from the well! Be more responsible. Was that new theatre/stage that was built at A.H.S. really necessary right now? Really? I'm sure there will be plenty that will defend the spending. Fine. You can spend whatever you choose. Just do not expect others to pay for it! It's really that simple.
Rick Bowen November 11, 2011 at 10:22 PM
Jo Ann, I hear your anger. However, you are just plain wrong on your facts. The new Arts Centers built at AHS and CHS were built with bond money that can ONLY be used for building (no discretion involved, use it to build or lose it). The fund raiser that you speak of, that money BY LAW cannot be used for salaries. And, as public schools, it is ILLEGAL to demand payment from those outside the district. Just as it would be illegal to demand payment from you. The district does make a suggestion to those parents for a donation and the majority of those parents write a check. The Teachers of LVUSD have taken a pay cuts. They have unpaid days off and have sacrificed for your children. The District asked, you answered. Your answer was No. Now we all have to accept that and move forward. Just know that we move forward sacrificing when we really did not have to.

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