Every four years Las Cruces Public Schools gives the voters of Las Cruces an opportunity to approve funding for the construction and maintenance of school facilities throughout the school district. On Tuesday, Feb. 6, voters will have to opportunity to vote on a $50 million school bond election that if approved, would not increase the school tax rate, district officials said.
If passed, the election would allow LCPS to sell up to $50 million in bonds during the next five years to fund the construction of new classrooms and multipurpose rooms, safety and security upgrades, major school renovations such as new roofs and heating and cooling systems, new furniture, playground equipment, districtwide technology support, and phase I of major upgrades to physical plant facilities.
Where and when do I vote?
On Election Day, Tuesday Feb. 6, registered voters can vote at any of the 13 voting convenience centers listed below from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The voting convenience centers are: Desert Hills Elementary School, 280 N. Roadrunner Pkwy.; Doña Ana County Government Center, 845 Motel Blvd.; East Picacho Elementary School, 4450 N. Valley Dr.; Fairacres Elementary School, 4501 W. Picacho Ave.; Hillrise Elementary School, 1400 S. Curnutt St.; Jornada Elementary School, 3400 Elks Dr.; Las Alturas Fire Station, 4145 Cholla Rd.; Las Cruces High School, 1750 El Paseo Rd.; Mayfield High School, 1955 N. Valley Dr.; Sonoma Elementary School, 4201 Northrise Dr.; Sunrise Elementary School, 5300 Holman Rd.; Thomas Branigan Memorial Library, 200 E. Picacho Ave. and Tombaugh Elementary School, 226 Carver Rd.
What projects could the proceeds of the bonds pay for?
Americans With Disabilities Act Compliance (Districtwide) – $200,000; Athletics – (Picacho MS Girls Lockers, Oñate HS Bleachers, Camino Real MS Basketball, Field of Dreams) $555,000; Classrooms, Multipurpose Rooms & Remodels – (Fairacres ES, Hillrise ES, Desert Hills ES) $15,000,000; Contingency/Land Acquisition (future schools) – $4,988,000; Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning System – (Lynn MS) and Intercom System (Oñate HS) – $2,185,000; LCPS Technology/Energy Efficiency (Includes solar project) – $3,585,000; Playground Equipment or Shade Structures (10 elementary schools) – $911,000; Physical Plant Complex – Phase I (new facilities and major renovations) – $11,000,000; Roofs (Valley View ES) – $1,300,000; Safety and Security (12 schools: entrances, fences, gates, parking lot lighting) – $3,326,000; School Furniture (Mayfield HS throughout & Sierra MS library) – $2,950,000; Renovations & Repairs (Columbia ES) $4,000,000.
What impact will the bond approval affect my taxes?
Voter approval of the bond would not increase the current school tax rate, which is currently $9.92 per $1,000 of assessed value of a person’s property. Taxable value is one-third of the assessed value of a person’s property. Therefore, a Las Cruces homeowner with a home valued at $150,000 pays approximately $496 per year, or $41.34 per month in school taxes, officials said.
If the bond issue does not pass, the district would have to fund the most critical projects, on an as-needed basis, using a limited pool of operational dollars which must also be used for classroom expenses, district programs and employee salaries.
“We simply can’t afford to use day-to-day funds used to operate the school district for major construction projects,” said district spokeswoman Jo Galvan. “That’s why the state allows districts to hold elections for critical brick and mortar needs and building maintenance.”
For additional information on where to vote, call: (575) 647-7428 or for additional election information, call (575) 527-6014.
-LCPS Communications Coordinator Paul Dahlgren, email@example.com, (575) 527-5808