May 16th Bond Election
August 29th Bond Election
On Tuesday, August 29th, voters in District 93 will have the opportunity to decide whether to approve a $34.5 million bond to build a new elementary school and provide funds to repair and replace school roofs.
The new school will be built to enroll 750 students in general education classrooms and will also provide additional classrooms for special education programming.
Bond Questions & Comments
If the bond is approved, how much will our taxes increase?
If approved, this bond will cost taxpayers $35 a year for every $100,000 of their property's taxable value. The bond will be repaid over the next 17 years.
Based on the passage of HB 292, we anticipate that D93 taxpayers will pay a total of $249 per $100,000 of taxable value each year to support schools. This includes these voter approved levies:
- $98 for supplemental levy
- $46 for facilities levy
- $108 for bond levies
If the levy is not approved, we anticipate that D93 taxpayers would pay a total of $213 per $100,000 of taxable value to support schools.
The interest rate anticipated on the proposed bond issue is 3.55% per annum. The total amount estimated to be repaid over the life of the bonds, based on the anticipated interest rate, is $37,479,392, consisting of $34,500,000 in principal and $11,896,871 of interest, less $8,917,479 in estimated bond levy equalization payments. The term of the bonds will not exceed seventeen (17) years from the date of issuance.
The estimated average annual cost to the taxpayer on the proposed bond levy is a tax of $35 per $100,000 of taxable assessed value, per year, based on current conditions.
As of August 29, 2023, the total existing bonded indebtedness of the District, including interest accrued, is $100,034,384.
How was this decision made?
The Board of Trustees voted to hold a bond election in their meeting on June 15th. This decision was made based on the majority of suggestions received from patrons in a follow-up survey after the election in May received approval from 65.2% of voters.
It has been ten years since Summit Hills Elementary school opened, the last elementary school built in District 93. Over that decade, our elementary school population has grown by 700 more students.
Most of this growth has come from families moving into new housing developments so some elementary schools have experienced rapid growth while other schools have seen a decline in their enrollment. Over the past decade, the Board has approved changes in school boundaries four times to best make use of available classrooms across the District. At times, those boundaries have even included "islands" to bus students away from more crowded schools to schools with available space. As the chart below shows, most of our elementary schools are at their capacity or have exceeded their capacity by adding trailers to provide up to six additional classrooms. We have intentionally created available space at Ammon and Falls Valley elementary schools to allow for rapidly growing housing developments in their boundaries.
Where will the new school be built?
If voters approve the bond, the new school will be built south of Telford Road (49th North) and east of Ammon Road. While the new school will primarily address overcrowding in Iona and Discovery elementary schools, as we redraw school boundaries, we will also do our best to reduce overcrowding in other elementary schools across the District.
What steps has the district taken to address rising property taxes?
With unprecedented increases to the assessed values of homes and businesses over the past several years, the D93 School Board restructured its approach to property tax collections. Instead of trying to maintain a flat levy rate, the Board instead decided to level the total dollars to collect each year for bond payments. The Board refinanced prior bonds to not only save millions in interest costs, but also also to level our annual bond payments. Doing this created a flat payment of approximately $9 million each year after we receive bond levy equalization funds from the state. This approach means that as property values go up, the levy rate will go down at the same rate, as shown in the chart below. Last September, to combat an unprecedented spike in property values of more than 30%, the school board also voted to use money from our bond savings account to provide a one-time, $6 million reduction in property taxes.
How will the new property tax relief bill affect our taxes?
This year, the state also enacted property tax relief, HB 292, that provides new funding to school districts to pay bonds, reduce property tax levies, or to reserve funds for future facilities needs. The amount that we will receive will depend on on how much money is in the state surplus budget as well as the number of students in attendance in our schools.
Based on early estimates, we expect to receive between $3.5 and $5.5 million next year. These funds will be used to pay our existing bonds, which will reduce the amount of property taxes that we collect from our local taxpayers. We anticipate that this will reduce property taxes by about $75 per $100,000 next year (but, this amount could be as low as $55 per year and as high as $90 per year).
What are the requirements to vote?
Additional voting information, including where to vote can be found at https://www.idahovotes.gov
FOR REGISTERED VOTERS WITH PHOTO ID
As outlined in Idaho Statute §34-1113, a registered voter must present a photo ID. (A voter without photo ID may sign a Personal Identification Affidavit instead, see the Without Photo ID section below.)
Forms of photo identification may be any one of the following: An Idaho driver’s license or Idaho photo identification card. A U.S. passport or Federal photo identification card. A tribal photo identification card. A current student photo ID, issued by an Idaho high school or post secondary education institution. A license to carry a concealed weapon issued by a county sheriff in Idaho. After presenting proper photo identification, the voter will be issued a ballot to be tabulated with all other ballots.
WITHOUT PHOTO ID
As outlined in Idaho Statute §34-1114, a registered voter may sign a Personal Identification Affidavit in lieu of presenting photo identification. If a voter is not able to show an acceptable ID, the voter will be given the option to sign the Personal Identification Affidavit. On the Affidavit, the voter swears to his/her identity under penalty of perjury, a felony under Idaho Statute §34-1114. After signing the Affidavit, the voter will be issued a ballot to be tabulated with all other ballots.
FOR NON-REGISTERED VOTERS
As outlined in Idaho Statute §34-408A, an individual who is eligible to vote (as outlined in Idaho Statute §34-402) may register to vote by: appearing in person at the polling place for the precinct in which the individual maintains residence, by completing a registration application, making an oath in the form prescribed by the secretary of state and providing proof of residence dated at least 30 days prior to election day. An individual may prove residence for purposes of registering by: Showing an Idaho driver’s license or Idaho identification card issued through the department of transportation; or Showing any document which contains a valid address in the precinct together with a picture identification card; or Showing a current valid student photo identification card from a postsecondary educational institution in Idaho accompanied with a current student fee statement that contains the student’s valid address in the precinct.
Q: What has the average cost been to build an elementary school historically?
The estimated costs for the school are provided by architects and construction firms based on recent school construction and the cost of materials and labor. The price to build schools has gone up with the increased cost of construction.
- 2024: New School $29.4M ($349 per sq. ft.)
- 2012: Summit Hills $9.7M ($143 per sq. ft.)
- 2010: Mountain Valley $8.1M ($121 per sq. ft.)
- 2008: Discovery & Bridgewater $9.4M ($138 per sq. ft.)
Q. How many schools do we need to build over the next 5 years to meet the needs of incoming students?
If this bond is approved, we do not anticipate the need to propose another bond for at least four more years. Our 2018-203 Facilities Planning Guide (d93.org/FacilitiesPlan), recommended building two elementary schools to add space for 1,300 additional students by 2030. This would be the first of those two schools. The plan also recommended building additions to Hillcrest and Bonneville High Schools to expand their capacity to at least 1,600 students each and to also consider replacing Ammon Elementary School.
We will begin working to update a new Facilities Planning Guide to review these recommendations and to develop new recommendations based on where new developments are happening and how trends in our enrollment have changed.
Do Lottery Funds pay for schools?
Yes, schools do receive lottery funds to help pay for schools. This year, D93 schools received $1.35 million from lottery funds, which we budget to maintain and upkeep our schools. With 1.8 million square feet of schools, we received about 72 cents per square foot. In comparison to a household budget for a 3,000 square foot home, this would pay for about $2,100 of maintenance and upkeep each year.
Additional Bond Information
For additional information about the bond election, please send an email to email@example.com or click on the Ask D93 tab on the District website. Superintendent Woolstenhulme and members of the Board of Trustees will host a special D93 Live on Monday, August 28th to discuss the bond and answer questions from the community. This event will start at 8:00 pm on the D93 Facebook page.