“Shall Goshen Community Schools issue bonds or enter into a lease to finance the renovation of and construction of improvements to Goshen Middle School and Goshen High School, which includes site improvements, which is estimated to cost not more than $17,150,000 and is estimated to increase the property tax rate for debt service by a maximum of $.1098 per $100 of assessed valuation over the 20-year life of the bonds?”
ON NOV. 5, registered voters within the boundaries of Goshen Community Schools will have the opportunity to answer the question above and to directly impact their quality of life here in the Maple City. In the form of a “yes” vote that quality would be enhanced with a new pool for the school corporation, along with expanded music and physical education facilities at both Goshen High School and Goshen Middle School, all part of a proposed $17.15 million construction and remodeling project.
In the form of a “no” vote that would equate to a victory against an additional tax over the state-mandated 1 percent cap for residential property owners. Make no mistake, living in a community with low taxes contributes to the quality of life for many residents. The tax impact if the project were to be approved by voters would be about $37.03 per year for the median value home owner, which is $101,500. Keep in mind, that impact will be less for some and considerably more for others.
STARTING THIS PAST Sunday, and running through Friday, Goshen News reporter Sherry Van Arsdall will navigate through this potential project and examine what the needs of the school corporation are and what the concerns of taxpayers are. The hope is that we can give voters the knowledge they need to make an informed decision when they cast their ballot.
We’d also like to remind voters that there is one more school-sponsored informational meeting at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday inside the Goshen Middle School. School officials have already held several input meetings that we feel have been very helpful. We’d like to commend them for opening up the floor to the public and answering tough and legitimate questions about this project. We would also encourage voters to visit the GCS website at http://www.goshenschools.org/blog/2013/10/22/updated-slideshow-regarding-proposed-renovations/ to view a slide show regarding the proposal.
Polls will open at 6 a.m. on Nov. 5. Registered voters of precincts Elkhart 1 through Elkhart 21, comprising all of the Goshen Community School Corporation are eligible to vote. Polls will close at 6 p.m. Eligible voters can also vote early at the Elkhart County Administration Building, 117 N. Second St., Room 108, Goshen. You can refer to the information box on the front page today for dates and hours of operation.
WE PLAN TO take a position on this project next Sunday. Meanwhile, we will continue to process the pros and cons of the matter and encourage the public to do the same. This referendum is a classic illustration how our community can come together and decide on a course of action.
See you at the polls.