BY CHERYL AND MORRIE PONGRATZ
Many decades ago, when we lived in White Rock, our children attended the White Rock elementary schools – Chamisa and Pinon. Over the decades the conditions of those buildings have deteriorated to where the roofs leak, climate control is now inadequate, and plumbing issues have arisen. The cost of maintaining those school buildings has increased to the point where it is more cost efficient to build new buildings.
Per New Mexico law, we cannot pass a mill levy for operational expenses such as teacher’s salaries or building maintenance. Salaries amount to 87% of operational expenses. Therefore, money spent on maintenance reduces the money available for teacher salaries.
The state has approved construction and has allocated an additional $35 million for the projects, but we only receive the supplemental funding if the bond passes in November. We need every penny of it to successfully rebuild both schools.
Mark your calendar for Nov. 7 and vote “Yes” on the school’s General Obligation Bond. Passage will not increase your property tax rate. Let’s give the teachers and students a building that doesn’t need buckets to catch dripping from a leaky roof!