Just days from now, voters will decide on a $140-million school bond issue in Tulsa. There's been no real opposition, until now. The group "Citizens Against Higher Taxes" met to discuss ways of defeating the school bond Thursday night.
Some of the speakers say North Tulsa schools have suffered since the district integrated blacks and whites. They say the $25-million approved in 1999 for rebuilding Booker T. Washington is not being spent as promised. Byron Watson leads the group, and he says the district is misleading voters by saying the bond issue won't raise taxes. "We know that the taxes will not increase. They're actually going to remain constant for the first year and a half. But in that second year, that's when the taxpayers will see a marked increase." Bob LaBass with Tulsa Public Schools counters, "You know if we did not vote, this year taxes would go down, but your schools would deteriorate."
Supporters of the bond package also met Thursday night at Hale High School for a town hall meeting. It was the ninth and final public meeting to outline benefits to students.
There are four separate bond items, with the majority of money going for construction, renovations and improvements to buildings. The rest of the $140-million will be spent on library learning materials, textbooks and technology and new buses.
Voters will decide on Tuesday, November 13th.