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School bond passes in close race

Original post made on Nov 7, 2012

San Ramon Valley voters were split on whether to vote in Measure D, a $260 million school bond that will dedicate funds specifically to schools in the San Ramon Valley Unified School District. The bond passed with 55.19 percent of the vote.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, November 7, 2012, 12:48 AM

Comments (20)

Posted by Wes
a resident of San Ramon
on Nov 7, 2012 at 8:58 am

How very stupid people are to raise their own taxes for public schools! Lol!!

Posted by Asian
a resident of Blackhawk
on Nov 7, 2012 at 10:25 am

Thanks to everyone who supported D.

Posted by Sad
a resident of San Ramon Valley High School
on Nov 7, 2012 at 1:30 pm

It makes me sad knowing that I will not be able to live in my home when we retire. The property taxes continue to rise out of control. I wonder how many people have looked at their property tax bill & discovered how much taxes, bonds, measures, propositions have added to their bill in the name of education. Education is definitely a worthy place to spend money, however I believe there is enough of our money out there to support a fantastic education for our students. Money is wasted on politicians who can't get any meaningful work done. Difficult choices are not being made. Of course education & children will always pull at our heart strings! Who would pass a property tax to give our politicians a raise? No one! Who would pass a property tax so that our government can waste our money? No one. Ahhh, but a property tax for education, of course people are going to pass that.

Posted by Quizzical
a resident of Alamo
on Nov 7, 2012 at 5:34 pm

Hey, at this hour it has not (as yet) been passed! There is still hope.

Posted by Sylence Dugood
a resident of Danville
on Nov 7, 2012 at 7:24 pm

Dear Sad,

In this post-election environment, I will not overtly criticize your relative awareness of property tax rates. I'll offer you the following link which comes from a non-partisan body (Intuit) whose business is to assist with taxes (preparation). I believe that a rational personal will take them as credible ( Web Link ). As you'll find, California's current median property-tax rate is 0.74% (per $$$ of home value) versus a national average of 0.96%. NJ has a chart-topping median rate of 1.89%. Yes, some townships (a type of municipal body common back East) are much more.

For anyone (such as myself) who has lived a significant portion of their adult life on the East Coast can look at our relative property-tax rates here, as compared to what we paid on our homes back East, and say we are getting a very fair deal. You can thank 1977's Prop 13 for this uniquely Californian benefit.

Posted by Jeff
a resident of San Ramon
on Nov 8, 2012 at 8:27 am

Just because east coast taxes are out of line is no reason to make ours the same! The money will be wasted----I am in my 28th year teaching----you pro tax increasers have no clue.

Posted by Ann
a resident of Danville
on Nov 8, 2012 at 12:28 pm

At this time, the county is STILL counting the provisional ballots.

IF this punitive bond passes, this community and school district will have the funds of the tax initiative 30 coming into the state and schools, as well as a large percentage of the project costs from the state Matching Funds Program - and then finally $260,000,000.00 windfall to buy the best education that money can buy. There is one exception: the money will not buy better teachers. The CTA will make sure of this fact.

Posted by Louie, a former teacher
a resident of Danville
on Nov 8, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Yes, Jeff, the Measure D money will be squandered. Prop 30? Let's see if there is ever any actual flow-through to education.

While unions are highly questionable in All aspects of American business, it is true that the CTA will not effect the quality of teachers(most of whom are excellent in this district.) NOR can the CTA effect the quality and manners of the students the teachers greet each morning.

If all students came to school ready to behave and learn, and all parents stopped maneuvering for higher grades for underperforming students, public education would have an entirely different look.

Posted by Sylence Dugood
a resident of Danville
on Nov 8, 2012 at 4:59 pm


As an educator of 28 years, I'm surprised that you would jump to an assumptive position as to my apparent desire for or against additional levy of property-tax without more information. Regardless, I offered an opinion on what was a factual net-benefit to myself for relocation to a part of the country with strict property-tax control relative to most other states. More so, if you followed the link that I included in my prior post, you would find that relatively 'high' property taxes are not indigenous to the East Coast alone. The Republic of Texas, Nebraska and North Dakota impose median property-tax rates of 1.81, 1.76 & 1.42%, respective. In addition, one's property values in those states and elsewhere are continually reassessed based upon dynamic market value.

I will not disparage you further, regardless of your statement to myself. As a personal rule, I choose to maintain great respect for educators at all levels. I would however encourage a bit more reticence on assuming anyone's bias towards taxation.

Posted by Math
a resident of Danville
on Nov 8, 2012 at 6:52 pm

1.8 % property tax in states like Texas or North Dakota is much less in total taxes as values of property is 300% more in CA

Posted by Sylence Dugood
a resident of Danville
on Nov 8, 2012 at 9:23 pm


You bring up a good point. In fact, you don't leave much room by which to disagree.

For the sake of further knowledge (certainly can't hurt), I would encourage you to do a very modest Google or Bing search on actual property taxes paid versus published home valuations in virtually any of the communities (e.g towns, townships and shore counties) affected by Hurricane Sandy in NJ or on Long Island (NY). Just for awareness sake, I would not search for Belmar or Point Pleasant, NJ as those communities tend to skew the cost-tax curve egregiously. If 'math' is your thing, I'm sure you'll find the numbers enlightening.

Posted by Ann
a resident of Danville
on Nov 9, 2012 at 9:39 am

As of today (Nov. 9th):

1. The elections office has yet to count 82,000 Vote by Mail ballots. These ballots were actually hand dropped into the voting offices the day of the election.

2. The elections office also has, 23,000 provisional ballots to count.

Therefore; the Measure D money tax grab by our district and board members has NOT been decided yet. The 55.20% in favor of D could change after these ballots have been counted.

The newspapers and this website should state that not all vote have been counted when they are reporting that Measure D passed. At least to appear as responsible publications; however, since when has the press been viewed as responsible in the past 15 years??? Relying on the mainstream press for facts and accurate, unbiased information is almost laughable. Journalists in the main stream media stopped researching, and writing the news with integrity years ago. Fortunately there are many websites who employ excellent writers who actually report news and report facts and details.

Posted by Ann
a resident of Danville
on Nov 9, 2012 at 10:16 am

BTW: Jessica Lipsky (writer for this article) would be wise to have stated in the article the fact that until ALL votes have been counted officially, the results could change.

Writers need to keep their distance from the subjects and issues in their own community, in order to stay clear of cheerleading for particular issues. What happened to who, what, where, when, why, and how?? What happened to follow up questions??

Regarding the tax initiative 30, somehow Terry Koehne was given a pass from Lipsky about his flippant comment, "If 30 passed, it would have a tremendous effect on our district - although there would be no extra dollars, it would mean a significant impact...otherwise we would have to cut the school year by 10-15 days."

WHAT THE HECK?! Terry Koehne is a community relations coordinator for the San Ramon School district. He's not a finance expert. How could a "journalist" as Lipsky let Koehne's comments stand, without delving deeper into his threat (the districts's threat) of shortening our school days in this district?

How does Kohene justify his comments "there will be no extra dollars"... If/when 30 passed Especially regarding the matching funds help towards the upcoming school projects and adding Measure D into the pot of money towards our schools?? There will be loads of "EXTRA" funds for the school district with 30 passing, money from the Matching Fund Program towards a percentage of the projects, and Measure D passing (if it passes officially).

How journalism has changed over the years... is it too much to ask writers to at least cover stories (especially political) with thorough reporting??

Posted by Jake
a resident of Alamo
on Nov 9, 2012 at 11:37 pm

Comparing one tax with other states can be misleading. Texas does have higher rate property tax, however, it does not have an income tax. As stated by Math, for a comparable home, the Texans pay less in actual dollars since valuations are less. There are other non-monetary trade offs; Texas does not have the California weather, otherwise I'd move!

Posted by Flummoxed
a resident of Danville
on Nov 10, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Congrats, saps, this eternally "needy" district will continue to send parcel taxes and bonds your way knowing that you will continue to enable them to be the most well-compensated administrators and teachers in the County.

Posted by Bill
a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2012 at 7:20 am

As some on the right would say like Wes did, "How very stupid people are to raise their own taxes for public schools! Lol!!" The intelligent progressive folks see the value of quality education and doing what we can to make our schools the best possible in the region. Those who don't see the big picture never will and will continue to try and pull down progress to return to their idea of a better time that never really ever existed.

Posted by Mike
a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2012 at 8:14 am

Excellent schools in the Tri-Valley are what maintains high property values.

Posted by Joan Hamblin
a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2012 at 8:19 am

Why should there be taxes on property in the first place? If one cannot pay the property taxes, in time, that property will be seized. Personally, we have had that happen in California. Somehow,for several years we did not receive the tax statement for the the property we owned jointly and that property was "sold to state" and subsequently auctioned off before we learned of it. Protection of the rights of private property was of utmost importance to the Founding Fathers as the y created the Declaration Of Independence. "No other rights are safe where property is not safe." -- Daniel Webster

Posted by Sylence Dugood
a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2012 at 9:23 am


I'm not quite sure of all the points that you are trying to make. However, your reference to our Founding Fathers and their perspective on the act of taxation WITH representation is not quite consistent with the historical record. Property taxes (well before income taxes) were levied throughout history, Europe and conveyed to the Colonial municipalities. I believe that John Adams (Founding Father) was the first President to institute a Federal property tax that in those days was referred to as a 'window tax'. The number and size of windows in or on your property stipulated the amount of tax you owed and so forth. It's not new. If you want the back-story, research the (John) Fries's Rebellion of 1799. As for paying one's taxes when due, well....

Posted by Brookside
a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2012 at 3:17 pm

If you can't afford to live in your home in retirement that probably means you're not a public employee or more specifically, a member of a public union. Many in the private sector are in trouble, but I'm afraid it has nothing to do with measure D.

America voted their hand into my pocket in the national election, and Californians doubled down to pay for our massive state spending and bloated public pensions that are out of control. Measure D is the only tax I can think of that will actually pay for something that will benefit my community.

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