Portland schools push to renew bond for ‘100-year investments’

Your Local Election Headquarters

The bond does not raise taxes, it's a renewal of the current tax rate from 2017

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — There is a billion-dollar tax issue on the ballot for Portland-area residents this year. Measure 26-215 is a Portland Public Schools bond measure that would raise more than a billion dollars to continue to improve the city’s aging school buildings.

Wilson High School is among the schools that would benefit if the $1.2 billion bond measure passes.

jefferson high school 06112016_1517272645092.jpg.jpg

The bond money is designed to complete the renovation of Benson Polytech High School and get to work on renovations for Jefferson High School. Work would also get underway for design and plans to renovate Cleveland and Wilson High.

“Jefferson is really at the heart of this package. We have a 20-30 year plan to remodel and renovate all of our schools, and the renovation of Jefferson would be in this package. This school was built in 1908,” said Julia Brim-Edwards, Portland School Board member.

Even though students are not in the buildings this year due to the pandemic, the school board says the bond is part of the district’s long-term goal to update and modernize school facilities.

“These are investments, not just for next year, but really these are 100-year investments,” said Brim-Edwards. “Like in 1908, the community made an investment in this community.”

cleveland high school_324335

Some of the money would also go toward a center for Black Student Excellence, replace old textbooks, improve security, and make PPS buildings more accessible to people with disabilities.

“When you go into that building, the message it sends to students is not a positive one,” said Brim-Edwards. “And if you look at the upgrades that happened at Grant and Franklin, you’ll see those environments are ones in which students will be supported and ready to learn, and have access to what they need in order to leave high school and be ready for the next steps in life.”

The bond does not raise taxes. It is a renewal of the current tax rate from the 2017 bond—that’s $2.50 per $1,000 of assessed value, which is $1,000 on a $400,000 home. This bond is part of a series of bond measures approved by voters in 2012 and 2017 to fix up Portland schools, which serve more than 49,000 students.

Follow KOIN 6 for the latest news and weather


Download our FREE news and weather apps for iPhone, iPad and Android. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and sign up for our email newsletters.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Twitter News Widget

Trending Stories

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss