Wake County $550 million school bond referendum closer to landing on November ballot

Wake County commissioners took another step closer to putting a nearly $550 million school bond referendum on the November ballot.

A public hearing on the matter is now scheduled for the commissioners' August 6 meeting.

A property-tax rate increase of 2.3 cents would pay for the $548 million school bond that would go toward covering construction costs on seven new schools and renovation projects on 11 others in fiscal years 2020 and 2021.

"We've been trying to make sure that we don't increase property taxes any more than is necessary to build the schools that we need," said Matt Calabria, Wake County Commissioner.

The money would also help pay for the replacement of old equipment such as HVAC's in aging schools, technology upgrades, and land acquisition.

"It's vital," Commissioner John Burns said. "Those schools have to be built- we're constitutionally required to build them and upkeep them and this will be the cheapest possible money to do that."

Commissioners also want voters to approve two other bonds this fall.

A $349 million bond referendum for construction and renovations at Wake Tech Community College would mean an additional 1.15 cents on the property tax rate.

Also, $120 million for parks, greenways, recreation and open space bond referendum would increase the property tax rate by another .35 cents.

The total cost to taxpayers, should voters approve all three bond referenda, would be 3.8 cents to the property tax rate, or $114 on a $300,000 home.
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