Letters to the Editor

School bond: Vote no

Now is not the time for a $45 million dollar school levy. The size of the levy is not commensurate with the weak economy.

We should make do with what we’ve got and maintain and remodel the existing school to accommodate more students and move the ninth-grade students back to the middle school. The new school, sports stadium, and arts center are not a necessity.

A performing arts center should not be located on school grounds. The security of the school and the safety of the students would be compromised when the center is in use. A performing arts center should be built on its own property with private funds — perhaps at a downtown location.

According to the school board and supporters of the levy the school facility is in shambles. I find this hard to believe as the school is not that old and simply needs maintenance. Schools are built to much higher standards then most homes and homeowners don’t have to totally replace or completely remodel their homes every 20 to 30 years!

Twenty-five years ago my home was purchased for $50,000. A recent tax assessment for the year 2003 priced at $201,981. Had I not maintained my home, it would be in shambles and worth nothing.

Please examine the current tax on my home and the proposed increase if the levy passes. The home is assessed for 2002 at $194,929. The tax bill is $1,748.36. The current tax structure allocated $964.64 of this amount to the school system —- approximately 52 percent of the bill. If the levy passes the school system will appropriate $1,114.93 of my tax bill or 62 percent.

The school board and levy supporters should remember the tax revolts that targeted excessive taxation — the Boston Tea Party, Proposition 13 in California and the Washington automobile license tab initiative. All addressed excessive taxes.

A no vote on the school levy March 11 will send a strong message to the board of directors of Oak Harbor School District No. 201 that we have seen through the wool that they tried to pull over our eyes!

Joe Thompson

Oak Harbor

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