Archive for Wednesday, January 26, 2011

School district can’t build off-site streets, can be part of special assessment

January 26, 2011

Tonganoxie USD 464 has no authority to spend funds from any source to build roads that are not on school property, said longtime Kansas deputy commissioner of education Dale Dennis.

“In my opinion, the answer is no,” Dennis said Tuesday. “I know of no authority for school districts to build roads on somebody else’s property. Can you imagine the problems that could cause?”

The school district’s ability to participate in possible extensions of 14th and East streets necessitated with a successful USD 464 bond issue has become an issue as the Tonganoxie City Council discussed the needed improvements that could cost as much as $4.5 million.

Dennis clarified that although the district could not build a road on property it doesn’t own, it could do so on its property, such as the East Street extension through the current 80-acre middle school campus.

As for a road along a district’s frontage, such as a section of the possible 14th Street extension, that could only be done if the district owned the frontage property, Dennis said.

“If the frontage is owned by the city, the city has to do it,” he said.

However, the district could be part of a benefit district or special assessment created to pay for a street improvement, Dennis said.

“If the city chooses to assess them as part of a special assessment, that’s different,” he said.

Comments

getagrip 3 years, 10 months ago

Okay, so, someone mentioned earlier that the district isn't respectful of the City. Shouldn't this be a two way street and the City be respectful of the school district when it comes to building these roads?

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only1 3 years, 10 months ago

Shoot no! (sarcasm) What does education matter? We can put in a new interchange "for the future", but spending money for the future of our kids... Are you crazy???

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Stacy Crook 3 years, 10 months ago

It all comes down to the money, and right now no one has any to spare.

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mymonkey 3 years, 10 months ago

Does no one read the newspaper in this town? The "interchange" was voted down several weeks ago. 25or6to4 is correct. The money comes from an increase in property tax. How many in town can afford several hundred dollars extra in taxes? If people want it then be prepared to pay. As if taxes were not high enough now? It seems the school is one issue and the roads are another. Total is 30 million or so? I guess business and retirees will shoulder this along with others. Can barely afford to live here now. Seems odd to ask for this much during bad times for many of us.

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h5 3 years, 10 months ago

So much to say about the anti-tax statements but here are just a few comments. Tonganoxie USD 464 hasby far the lowest tax rate in Leavenworth, Wyandotte, and Douglas. The bond issue will cost the average tax payer in this community $12/month. This is equivalent to a large pizza at Casey's and just a little more than two foot-long sandwiches at Subway. Right now, it is the cost of a 1/4 tank of gas for your car. Bottom-line ... it isn't much, especially when you consider what is for. The school proposal has been put on the back burner for a year and a half despite the desperate needs of overcrowded schools where over 100 nine year olds attend class in mobile units and an old maintenance quansit hut. Let's face it, the time will never be right when we are talking about tax increases. This is about kids, not money. The plan addresses needs, not wants ... it is responsible and reasonable ... it will never be more affordable than it is right now. I'm sorry, "mymonkey", but perhaps you should move to a community with no children and dirt roads.

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12345 3 years, 10 months ago

Only $12/month? On top of the already $12/month we already pay for the last bond issue? On top of the sales tax for the pool? On top of all the other expenses we pay for the city and school? All these were also sold as "for the kids" and we are still paying for them. Where does it end?

I'm glad to hear you are doing so well that you are able to eat out at Casey's and Subway, but that's my $12 and I'll kindly ask you to keep your mitts off it!

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h5 3 years, 10 months ago

Well, I guess it will end when people stop having those darn kids. And by the way, it is only 12 bucks if your house is around 150,000. If your house is less than that, you won't pay that much. I think you have chosen a fine place to live, because judging by the negative, uninformed opinions of many citizens, the bond issue won't pass anyway. So you will get just what you want. An old school with trailers, a shed with classrooms, unsafe drop-off and pick-up areas, special education classrooms on a stage, and kids having PE in the hallways. I'm sure Tonganoxie will attract wonderful teachers and quality families with these accomodations.
And, by the way, we are "doing so well", that we are able to frequent those fine establishments at least a few times a month. Gas station pizza rocks.

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12345 3 years, 10 months ago

I take a lot of pride in my town. I grew up here. I am proud of the things we have and the good hard working people here in town. But they are going to tax us right out of town. You may be right about the mill levy - but I'll add that that house that was appraised at 150k was worth half that ten years ago and a fourth that twenty years ago. The mill levy might not have changed, but we are still paying twice the taxes we were ten years ago. You can try to twist that how you want by pointing out that our mill levy is lower, but at the end of the year that person in that 150k house is still paying the better part of $2000 in taxes on it. Our city and our school has been on this big spending orgy the last ten years, and it has to stop somewhere.

By the way, total taxes are calculated as appraised amount X mill levy. Wyandotte county is so high becuase their house prices are so low. We have high house prices here and a good tax base with lots of country homes and agricultural land to help pay the bills.

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Michael Vestal 3 years, 10 months ago

I really do not have a problem with a new school for our kids to go & learn. I have grand kids that will be going to school in the future. As one Blogger said here, A new building does not make our kids any smarter. The Problem I have, Is the poor planning of the Middle School when it was built. I understand All ready it is crowded. I believe if laid out differently, Both Grade & Middle Could have been done at the same time. Now is a very bad time Economically for a bond issue to pass. However, If Tonganoxie is to grow and prosper We need to keep OUR schools up to the standards of others around us. A quality education with quality teachers is a must.

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h5 3 years, 10 months ago

Tax rates, property value, cost of living, and wages are all relative to the time period in which we are living. I do wish life was more affordable for everyone these days.
I am afraid that given the location of this community, continued growth is inevitable. Over 5,000 new professional jobs will be in place at the Legends/KS Motor Speedway area by 2013 and those folks will be looking for homes. People are coming whether we like it or not and new schools will have to be built to house kids. .
I would venture to say that Basehor, Lansing, Piper, Bonner Springs, Eudora, Lawrence, and Baldwin City all have higher average house values than Tongie. Their USD mill levy is also an average of 8 mills higher than here. Community dialogue on this is healthy. I just hope that the voters take the time to research this, get all of the facts, and participate in the democratic process. In the end the majority will determine the outcome. We will all live with the result.

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Silence 3 years, 10 months ago

As an informed resident of our town, I can not in good faith vote for this bond. I find that TMS which was recently constructed, has entirely to many issues. From the simple things of functioning classroom clocks, and a gymnasium that is to small. To much larger issues of a drive way that can not support the traffic it was originally designed for, and the lack of restrooms for the number of students. Now not to say we can not learn from our mistakes, but I find it an uneasy thought. When we just recently completed this facility, that no one saw that enrollment was going to climb over the next few years, and had not planned accordingly in the construction of just one school. Now with that roles have changed, yet when I see that school has been closed due to snow removal as one of the key components to this decision. I ask how am I to trust someone with millions of dollars, and a major construction project, that apparently I can not trust to control a simple snow removal project? Yet I am inclined to agree, that we should evaluate improvements to just TES at this time.

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h5 3 years, 10 months ago

To our self-proclaimed "informed resident" -- That may be one of the lamest excuses for not supporting something that I have ever heard. Just in case you didn't notice...every school in a 60 mile radius canceled school on Thursday. Snow removal was a minor issue in comparison to uncleared rural roads and the -15 degree air temperature at 7am. Any percepted failures of the 2004 bond election have nothing to do with this election. Regardless of that plan or the current one, this community is going to be building schools every 7-10 years (or sooner) dependent upon the growth rate. You can see all of this on the "New Facilities Plan" on the USD 464 main web page www.tong464.org An outside consultant with nothing to gain recommended this plan based upon real research and data. Please do your homework next time before throwing out haphazard criticism that has no merit!

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booper1027 3 years, 10 months ago

It appears that the blog history of "Silence" is one of consistent skepticism of school administration. At the same time, the blogs support classroom teachers. Classic case of a KNEA activist??? I support our teachers but will not do so at the cost of throwing others under the bus. This is a very sad testimony for someone claiming to be pro-education citizen. Creating more public doubt in Tonganoxie is so helpful to those who are seeking progress. This is especially true in a community that loves to live in the past and ignore the possibilities of the future.

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