Fremont Citizens Network

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10 Reasons to Vote NO on Measure E

1.     The bond is written to make us think that it is ENTIRELY devoted to renovations for existing schools.  However, it contains about $250,000,000 to be used for “over runs and inflation” (~40%). 

2.     Coincidentally,  Developers need new schools for new development (more than 3,000 new homes in Fremont).  

3.     The bond’s $250,000,000 for “inflation and overruns” could be used to build those new schools.  

4.     As Assessed Property Values rise, the Measure E tax will increase year over year through the life of the bond.   

5.     Measure E contains $77,000,000+ in Capital Appreciation Bond – akin to a PAYDAY LOAN, discouraged by Jerry Brown (Governor) and Bill Lockyer (State Treasurer) and outlawed in many states.  Repayment of this amount DEPENDS ON the city’s ASSESSED VALUES RISING 4% PER YEAR FOR 38 YEARS.  As Prop 13 puts a 2% cap per year, this growth rate depends on turnover and new developments to make up the difference.  Fremont will be forced to accommodate more growth or make higher payments.

6.     If voters approve Measure E, and renew the parcel tax when it expires, the total property tax (for school bonds) on the average $450,000 (assessed value) home would increase from $191 per year to $479 by 2018.

7.     The bond provides NO SENIOR EXEMPTIONS.

8.     Property owners are still paying for: a parcel tax and two prior voter-approved bond measures from 1991 and 2002.  Measure E would extend payments on district bonds through 2051, but still leaves 3/4 of the identified district needs unaddressed.  There will be more bonds because there is more need. 

9.     Measure E bond language is so vague that the District can use our taxpayer $$ to buy land and build schools for all the new developments we will be forced to accept.  The DEVELOPERS should provide the land/facilities for all the students in the developments they build, NOT the taxpayers.  Previous history shows NO BOND should be approved before FUSD has formalized plans on Developers' promises to mitigate their impact, especially in the new BART development.   

10.  Our existing kids will never get new schools, if this bond money is used just to “fix” or buy new land/new schools for the new developments.  

Shouldn’t we be spending one-time funds to help current Fremont children by modernizing existing schools and instituting long-term facilities solutions?  VOTE NO ON MEASURE E!

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This is not about the kids of the people who run FCN, it's about the future of Fremont and kids other than your own.

Precisely.  Please review the Long Range Facilities Plan (see link on left).  It proposes to spend $59,554,000 to make urgent repairs and add classrooms to Horner Junior High. 

Assuming we will move 500-800 6th graders to grow the junior high to an 1500-1800 student middle school, we would be spending nearly $60 million, just to add kids to an aging site.  The campus will retain all its old facilities issues and its common space limitations.

This is not an efficient solution when FUSD projections for building a new middle school is only about $30 million (click link to FUSD Needs Analysis).

I was completely shocked at the independent assessment of the contingency allocation in this deal, specifically -

"Setting aside that much money for inflation and overruns is not uncommon, said Bill Jakel, a retired auditor at East Side Union High School District in San Jose. "We usually set aside 10 percent, so it's higher than we did, but 30 percent seems reasonable if you're counting both inflation and cost overruns,"

So Bill didn't consider inflation in *his* plans?  

How did he expect to cover the rising costs of materials and labor?? 

Seems like you'd have to conclude that either Bill's plans were ill-conceived OR the 30% is a bit on the rich side - - - OR  - - - a little of both.   This is a perfect example of the slippery slope these things tend to ride on . . . 10% was AOK for your programs, but 30% is AOK too ????!!!!!   It begs the question - What percentage of contingency IS too much??    And, while you're listening to the corn growing awaiting an answer to that question - consider that the difference between 10 and 30%  is a whopping 200% difference.  

Sorry folks but any manager that brought me a project plan for a facility which s/he currently manages AND which they have complete and unfettered access to with this kind of variable contingency, would be quickly let go and replaced by someone that had better command of the facts.

Maybe someday we'll see Chris's article make the TCB  -

Would anyone know what the contingency was for Measure B?  Thanks for the info.

This bond measure is a bad deal for all Fremont taxpayers. The actual cost of the bond is $1.75 billion of which $650 million (about 37%) will actually be spent in Fremont.  The remainder will be dividends for wealthy investors and investment funds that buy the bonds. These dividends are exempt from federal income tax and for California residents, exempt from state income tax as well. The mostly middle class taxpayers in Fremont will see our taxes increase while the bond holders will get a tax-free windfall. This is patently unfair as it effectively shifts the cost of public education away from the wealthiest and onto the middle class. Aside from wondering why our school board has let its physical plant fall into disrepair, we should demand that all the taxes raised for schools in Fremont should be spent in Fremont. Even though a parcel tax requires approval of two-thirds of voters rather than the union-mandated 55% for school bonds, this is a fairer way to finance our schools.

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