Welcome to ‘Bondville’ (aka Truckee, Calif.). If you are a homeowner in Truckee, in addition to the 1 percent assessed value of your home, you are also paying for no less than twelve (12) additional assessments. If your home is assessed at $250,000 in 2007 for example, by the year 2019 you will have paid somewhere in the neighborhood of $6,000 in taxes above your 1 percent.
This $6,000 does not include the latest Fire Tax, the recent Tahoe Forest Hospital assessment, any requests for more money from the Recreation and Parks District for money they will need to finish the new recreation center and of course Measure L should it be approved.
The timing for Measure L couldn’t be worse. What is the School Board thinking?
Contrary to what supporters of Measure L purport, ‘updated, new and improved’ facilities do not result in a better education. If students are truly motivated, they can learn almost anywhere. Throwing more money at the system does not give our students a better education. We should not give the School District any more money until they figure out how to educate our children. So far, more money hasn’t done the job.
As a former School Board Trustee I understand the challenges that School Boards face. I also know there are places to reduce costs and that more money isn’t the ultimate answer.
We are being told that second homes are contributing to the anticipated growth by the School District. Historically second homes do not produce students. What the School Board fails to say loudly is that the ‘lakeside’ portion of the School District is experiencing declining enrollment. Declining enrollment opens up possibilities for underused facilities.
More and more folks are asking for help to pay their utility bills. A tax dollar here, a tax dollar! Proponents of assessments think these ‘few’ dollars won’t make a difference. Think again, please!
After all, those Bonds, Measures & extra taxes are all good causes and sometimes pretty emotional. Who would dare to speak out against ‘Mom, Apple Pie, the American way and ‘ tax’em till they bleed’; well, I would. Those precious dollars can make the difference in whether families have nutritious food or any food at all. Enough is enough!
Necessity is said to be the Mother of invention. The School Board needs to get inventive. This community is not a bottomless pit of money. I urge all of us who truly care about the human condition in our community to send a message. No more taxes. Our students will still continue to be educated; the law demands that they be educated. Also, when the Measure L folks call you and ask for your vote, ask them where they got all their campaign money. Better yet ask the Registrar of Voters. You will be amazed like I am.
And lastly, I am not willing to give the School District any more money until the teachers get the respect they deserve and the focus changes to learning instead of unnecessary facades.
~ Lynne Larson, Truckee