With regards to the South Portland High School bond, claims such as “the total cost with interest is $70 million” (Albert A. Dimillo Jr.) are inaccurate and misleading. Please do not be fooled by the exaggerated numbers presented in last week’s letters to the editor.
According to the city finance director, the total cost of the bond, with interest, is $61 million over the 20-year repayment period. South Portland has over 23,000 residents in about 10,000 homes. The tax impact of the bond is spread over our robust residential and business tax base.
As for those who think we should wait for state funding before fixing our school, the reality is South Portland may wait forever for state funds. It is estimated there is over a billion dollars of need for school construction in Maine, but only $100 million will be allotted for funding in the next building cycle. Under the current school funding formula, “rich” cities like South Portland are last in line for state funds for education.
Unfortunately, we do not have the luxury of time. Don’t let our tax base deteriorate along with our high school. We must use our local funds to invest in our local community. Please vote yes for the high school.