Bond Proposal 2023 FAQ
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May 2023 Bond Proposal | Frequently Asked Questions
How did this bond election come about?
There have been several discussions in recent years regarding updating and improving our facilities for our students. Our current building and site fund has been great for taking care of some of our highest maintenance needs like parking lots and roofing, however, we have other large infrastructure projects that we cannot handle with current funding alone.
The board decided that now is the time for these improvements to be addressed and directed the administration and consultants to present those ideas to the community for input and feedback. The overwhelming response has been very positive, as a result, we will place a bond proposal before the community on May 2, 2023.
- Our facilities are well maintained but require some major infrastructure replacements.
- The existing Sinking Fund alone cannot address major projects
- Our new Strategic Plan includes facility improvements
- We are asking for "needs" not "wants"
- Goal - Minimize the tax impact on Coloma residents
What has been accomplished with the Sinking Fund?
- Some mechanical and electrical improvements
- Repairs to the Alwood Gym and High School Roof
- Interior finishes, including high school gym hallway, painting high school lockers and new toilet partitions at the Junior High School
- New pavement and repairs to the parking lots at the elementary, intermediate, and high school
- Purchase and installation of security cameras across the district
How has community input been incorporated into the projects?
The Board of Education hired Owen-Ames-Kimball Co. and TowerPinkster to assist with studying our site and facility needs and providing options. These two firms have worked with us for several years and have implemented several projects for us. Several planning meetings were held reviewing options to address our needs. The culmination of that process was to gather community feedback. There have been four community forums during the summer of 2022 where input was solicited, and ideas were then incorporated into the plans. There was a great turnout for these events. A community survey was also sent out in September 2022 and 238 residents took the time to provide ideas and comments. These suggestions were also analyzed and incorporated, where applicable. The community involvement has been largely positive and supportive.
What is being included in the Bond?
- windows and doors
- ceilings and floors
- LED Lighting
- mechanical equipment and energy controls
- paving and sidewalks
- playground improvements
- technology infrastructure
- athletic improvements
- toilet room upgrades
- security locks
- boilers and controls
- electrical panels
We are also recommending a community & student center addition to the Intermediate School and a new toilet room building at the baseball/soccer facility.
It is anticipated that these improvements will put our school district in good shape for the future.
How much is the bond amount?
The bond is for $28,250,000. The millage rate will be raised 0.99 mills and will be paid back over 25 years. This will cost an owner of a $100,000 market rate home $49.50 per year or less than $5 per month. A tax calculator will also be located on the website so that each resident can calculate their own individual amount in privacy.
Will air conditioning be included?
Will the new community center facility be available to the public?
- Before and after school practice and weekends
- Physical Education for our Intermediate School students during the school day
- Community events by appointment like: senior citizens gatherings, wedding showers and receptions, booster events, staff professional development
- Youth League practices, when not in use for school activities.
Why is the old High School and Alwood Gym being demolished?
- Existing rooms do not support modern learning
- High maintenance needs - non-insulated walls and roof
- Not barrier-free accessible - some areas are difficult to access
- A fitness center will benefit students and community
- All students will have access to better physical education facilities
- Our community will have access with a public entrance and barrier-free toliets
- Connecting the facility to our intermediate school will enhance safety
- Improved parking areas
- More site devoted to Intermediate School use (smaller footprint)
Why How will the district commemorate the old High School and Alwood Gym ?
How will staff input be included in the plans?
What athletic improvements are included?
Are technology improvements included?
Will new furniture be included?
Will inflation affect these budgets?
Inflation has certainly been a factor the last few years. The most recent forecast is that inflation will be lower and labor and material prices will also stabilize. We have incorporated escalation and contingency dollars into our planning process.
How will we know that we are getting competitive pricing on our projects?
By State of Michigan law, all projects need to be advertised publicly and competitively bid. Bids are awarded to the lowest qualified contractors inseveral bid categories. This ensures that we are getting the best pricing and qualified contractors to work on our projects.
Are these projects an economic benefit to our community?
Yes, these projects will bring dozens of workers into the Coloma community, and they will frequently visit our shops, restaurants and gas stationsover the course of several years. There will also be an opportunity for local construction trade companies to bid on this work.
Furthermore, local schools are the heart of any community and when we have quality schools, it can be an attractive draw for potential homeowners and can have a positive effect on property values.