IOWA CITY– The Yes votes were out in force for the Iowa City Community School District (ICCSD) revenue purpose statement (RPS) vote on Feb. 5, easily passing the language written to inject some cash into school facilities in a district-wide vote.
Superintendent Stephen Murley sounded ready to go to work when results of the revenue purpose statement vote were announced at the school board meeting.
“We have a tight timeline,” he said, for working out construction projects before the start of the building season.
Over 56 percent of voters favored the new RPS that will give the schools a credit line on anticipated revenues and extend the district’s local control over school sales tax revenue until 2029. Over 3,000 people voted yes to grant the schools some borrowing power to repair existing infrastructure and build new schools.
Just over eight percent of registered voters in the school district weighed in on the ballot to decide ICCSD’s fate. The highest turnout for a board election is 15 percent.
The infrastructure funding is vital to a draft of a facilities plan that will address ICCSD reliance on two dozen temporary buildings, also known as mobile classrooms, which are currently scattered throughout the district. Some ICCSD mobile classrooms have been in place for over a decade.
The 2012 draft of the administration’s facilities plan has new elementary schools going up in Iowa City and North Liberty, but east-side schools have been mentioned most often by board members. Murley has also promised relief for North Liberty’s elementary schools with a new one in the northwest part of the district.
Murley and ICCSD admin will be using forthcoming consultant reports on school capacity and enrollment projections to decide how to redraw school boundaries to accommodate the board’s diversity policy, passed on Feb. 5.