School bond proposal just another tax increase, reader says

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Western Placer Unified School District board wants to give us a Christmas present — a $222-million tax increase. Of course they call it a bond, which is a nice word for an additional property tax on our homes. Property tax makes the government the defacto owner of your house simply because if you don’t pay your property tax, our government will ultimately take your house. In this economy where money is tight and people are losing their jobs, this puts more pressure on homeowners. Remember, pay your tax increase or you lose your home. In the past decade, California voters have approved nearly $100 billion in school construction bonds at the state and local level, including $13 billion in 2002 (Prop 47) and $12.3 billion in 2004 (Prop 55). But that was not enough, so in 2006, California voters approved Prop 1D, a $10.4-billion bond. Apparently, Western Placer Unified School District has not tapped these funds? Western Placer Unified School District is $175 million in debt due to past construction and now we find out in September that the district had a budget surplus of $1.3 million and this month they have a deficit of $500,000—a swing of almost $2 million. Not to worry, this $222-million tax increase will solve these problems. When we pay our Placer County property tax, 61.5 percent of that money gets sent to our schools. In addition, we are still paying back a bond from a few years back. Piling debt upon debt is comparable to getting a new credit card to max out after you have already maxed out your first credit card. Why not pay off the first debt rather than racking up more debt? The solution is not to keep dumping more money into the problem. The solution is to use the money they currently have efficiently, wisely, and responsibly. Ken Campbell Lincoln