The tax measure to spend $25.3 million to replace aging portable classrooms at Colony Oak and Weston schools in Ripon Unified wasapproved in last week’s election by a comfortable margin after the counting of additional mail-in ballots.
Measure G was passing with a narrow margin of 56. 51 percent (3,092 for and 2,374 against) after the first round of counting was completed last Wednesday. Unofficial totals posted Tuesday afternoon with balance of the mail-in ballots counted gave the tax a 75.39 percent plurality (3,901 for and 2,896 against). The tax needed 55 percent support to pass.
In Manteca’s race for two council seats Steve DeBrum still finished don top by a comfortable margin with 40 votes in the final unofficial tally separating him from Debby Moorhead who finished second. The election night count had 22 votes separating the two with DeBrum receiving 28.37 percent (6,742 votes) and Moorhead 28.28 percent (6,720 votes). The tally on Tuesday afternoon after the rest of the mail-in ballots were counted put DeBrum at 28.30 percent (7,941 votes) and Moorhead at 28.16 percent (7,901 votes.) Tuesday’s count gave Ben Cantu 24.56 percent (6,892 votes) and Sheila Raya 18.72 percent (5,235 votes).
What Measure G means for Ripon
The Measure G bond will cost $8.25 per $100,000 of assessed property value per year. That - when combined with prior bond election tax rates - will take the annual cost per $100,000 in assessed valuation to $57.65 per $100,000.
The measure is designed to replace all aging and deteriorating portables at both Colony Oaks and Weston elementary schools with permanent classrooms plus adding science labs and libraries at each campus. Should the state for some reason not be able to provide all of the $8 million match in construction grants, the projects as outlined can still be completed.
The campuses after construction is finished for the most part would be similar to classrooms at Park View School and wired for the latest technology. The only buildings not being replaced at thethe two elementary sites are the multipurpose rooms and administrative offices.
The bond will also allow the district to pay off debt connected with the school farm and future site for a high school on Clinton South Avenue. It will use money borrowed at a lower interest rate to pay off remaining debt on the land purchase to save taxpayers $6 million. The money saved, in turn, can be spent on retaining qualified teachers and protecting the quality of classroom instruction.