Why the August Bond?
1. More than 59% of Ridgefield voters (a significant majority in a record turnout for a school bond election) said YES to the much larger $107,000,000 February bond program. A promise was made to the voters that a much smaller bond would be presented as a part of the District’s longer-term phased approach.
2. This $40,465,000 bond program leverages an additional $12,300,000 in state assistance revenue, which is more than 30% of our local investment. Those state capital dollars will be spent somewhere; let Ridgefield tax dollars pay for Ridgefield, and not other districts' schools.
3. A successful August election allows the District to selectively time the bid process. It is estimated this will save the District 5% ($2,000,000 or more) compared to a spring bid.
4. The coronavirus further highlights the importance of sufficient space for the health, safety, and well-being of students and staff. Union Ridge is over capacity by approximately 200 students and South Ridge will open the year overcapacity as well.
5. Opening the school in January 2022 will save the District the expense of additional portables that would be needed through the entirety of the 2021-2022 school year. More importantly, the timing would allow the District to educate 550 students, who would otherwise be in portables, a full semester earlier than a February bond would.
6. Some people will ask why run a bond election during a time of economic uncertainty? Our School bonds are paid back over a nearly 20 year period. Invariably over two decades, economic conditions will vary, including both good times and less prosperous times.