Why is Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools asking for a school bond in 2017?
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools will use the bond money to build new schools and provide renovations or additions to others. Our 10-year capital plan identifies more than $2 billion in capital needs. The $922 million would get us closer to meeting those needs. Bonds allow governments to borrow money at low interest rates to finance capital projects. Mecklenburg County would sell bonds to fund new school construction, repairs and renovations for CMS.
Seventy-eight percent of our schools are at or over capacity – they are housing more students than they were intended to hold. We also have 20,000 students in 1,100 mobiles. The bonds would pay for 17 new schools and would relieve overcrowding at 20 other schools. The bonds would help us repair and renovate older schools so that they can better provide the flexible learning space students need. The bonds would also reduce the number of students in mobiles at the 29 project sites.
The Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners has said no tax increase would be needed for the school bonds.
The 2017 bond would provide capital funding to build 17 new schools, which includes replacing seven of our oldest schools. Adding these new schools would reduce overcrowding at 20 other schools. The bonds will also provide renovations or additions at 12 additional schools. Learning in the 21st century requires spaces that encourage collaboration, the use of technology and the freedom and flexibility to host multiple learning and teaching styles for staff and students. These bonds would help us provide 21st-century learning spaces and expand opportunities for students. .
CMS has two budgets—operating and capital. The $428.7 million was the county’s contribution to the annual operating budget, which pays for the day-to-day expenses of running the district. The capital budget pays for the design and construction of new schools and the renovation and replacement of existing schools – and the $922 million in bond money would go into the capital budget for the 29 proposed projects.
Yes. To vote in the November election, you can register to vote until Oct. 13. In addition, same-day, in-person registration and voting can be done Oct. 19 through Nov. 4. To learn more, visit the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections website here.
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