Over the past several years the citizens of South Portland have been asked to approve an expensive new high school project on a few different occasions. The people voted no every time. Since this issue is on the ballot again, the School Board must not understand why people have voted it down each time. Many have toured the school, many more know an employee or student, or attended ourselves. The majority of voters agree that an upgrade to our high school is necessary; that is not the point we disagree on.
Information on the city website compares the cost of this project with similar recent projects at other schools and shows that our planned project is average or just below. What it fails to tell voters is that all of those other projects had state or federal assistance in paying for their projects; the full cost of the proposed project is being put squarely on the shoulders of the people of South Portland. Over the payoff period for this project people in South Portland are being asked to pay $18,376 to $19,691 per person. That amount increases as high as $27,148 with interest, and even higher since it is a property tax and only property owners, not renters, will pay. I, too, believe an upgraded high school is needed, but until we have outside help my vote is and shall be no.
S. Wyatt Ross