Measure 26-158 Corbett School District Bond:
Corbett’s voters have sent another clear message to the district by voting no twice in 7 months on a school bond. We believe the community can come together to support a bond, but it will take work and a willingness to recognize and address the below concerns and issues.
The following must be done to return trust to the process and give a new bond a chance of passing:
- Return transparency, facts, ethical leadership and public Q&A to the process, prior to placing another bond on the ballot in Corbett. Between the last bond’s failure and placing this bond on the ballot, CSD offered no community Q&A with the public and in fact, backed out of a grange meeting to be held by NEMCCA. Read here.
- The district must stop using misleading rhetoric and scare tactics to influence voters in Corbett. See the graphic on the left for an example of how the district misrepresented the truth about district student population numbers. Read the letter from the County Health Department about the claims of “risks” to kids in the middle school that were used by the district and vote yes campaign web site. Ask the district about the comments made by staff when running earthquake drills.
- Provide a clear plan of how funds will be spent before placing a bond on the ballot. Are we replacing one middle school with a new middle school of the same size – or are we planning something else? How many new buildings are there? Is it 10,000 square feet more or 25,000 sf more? Is there a “Phase II” and how will we pay for that? Tell people the plan before asking them to vote.
- Provide the missing information from the proper public agencies to either confirm or deny the old building is really unsafe to the point of demolition. Where is the material testing/sensing to prove that this building is not reinforced masonry? Why did we not pay for those tests before this point? Does the district have proof this building must be demolished – or is it only what they “want”. Where is the proof that we have permission to actually remove this building from the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office?
- And finally, we must allow the citizens of Corbett the missing conversation about the growth of the district from out of the area students. Recognizing this started with a Charter school that was never legally established with Multnomah County. Because they skipped this step, our citizens were denied a public hearing about what this growth would look like. This process should now include a third party independent review of our local population projections. We must insist on having a school board who is willing to stand in opposition to school administration and place a cap on this growth to represent the people of our community. We must provide proof that Multnomah County, the Gorge Commission, and ODOT are aware and will allow us to replace the current building with any new building we propose.
Let’s leave a legacy that shows our community came together to deal with the real issues and restored trust in our school district, before we ask our citizens to vote again on another bond measure.