Redmond School District Ponders $75 Million Bond Offering

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Mike McIntosh, Superintendent of the Redmond School District 2J is leading an effort to gauge community interest and educate the community about the necessity for a 2018 $75M general obligation bond. The District has been conducting community meetings during the past two weeks. The school board will formally consider proceeding with the prospective bond offering in January 2018.

The Redmond School District currently serves 7,495 students in 13 schools. The District funded general obligation bonds approved by the voters in 2004 and 2008. With the proceeds of the 2008 bond, the District constructed Ridgeview High School (opened in 2012) and Sage Elementary School (opened 2010) – and made essential facility repairs with the remainder of the proceeds. However, facility/systems maintenance, repair, and replacement costs continue to mount.

According to McIntosh, the bond offering under consideration for voter approval in either May or November 2018 is a “Maintenance, Preservation and Safety bond.” Snows during the winter of 2017 revealed that numerous roof structures must be upgraded/replaced on existing schools for the sake of safety. Although Lynch received a $2.6mm modernization in 2008, a recent evaluation revealed it requires $15mm in immediate repairs or replace the entire facility for $20mm. McIntosh makes it clear that the proposed bond is “not for more space – but to address essential/overdue maintenance, preservation and security/safety considerations that our architectural and engineering consultants have itemized – that we cannot address without capital improvement proceeds from a general obligation bond. It’s a ten year plan.”

McIntosh points out “Structures, systems and components simply wear out over time. They need to be repaired, replaced and maintained. To be prudent stewards of the investment our community has made in these facilities, we must address these issues head-on. To delay this endeavor is not prudent stewardship and, as we all know, costs increase over time. It’s time to plan to get this under way. We have the plan.” The District retained BLRB Architects in 2016 to generate a 10 year facility master plan in concert with a consulting engineering firm – McKinstry.

The Redmond School District will complete a series of community meetings at Tumalo Community School on November 6 from 6-7:30pm. The specifics on the use of the prospective 2018 bond proceeds can be viewed at: http://www.redmond.k12.or.us/files/2017/10/RSD-Long-Range-Facility-Plan_2017.pdf

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Bill Dahl is a freelance writer, management consultant and award-winning photographer. He lives in Redmond with his best friend (wife), their rescued Greyhound Jasper, and Bill's Black Lab, Reggie - who accompanies Bill everywhere.

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