Let’s face it: Education is expensive. And a truly excellent education is even more expensive.
Public spending for quality public schools is an important and necessary investment that we make in ourselves and our society. The benefits to us as individuals are obvious. They range from the sheer joy that comes from learning, to the more concrete benefits of securing better jobs that dramatically increase lifetime earnings.
Sometimes overlooked are the benefits of education to our society. The truth of the matter is that a well-educated citizenry is essential to the survival and success of our 21st century American Democracy. In the end, we depend on one another to have critical thinking skills that enable us to analyze issues, address problems, and make sound decisions.
For every dollar invested today in education, the ROI — return on investment — in the years ahead is enormous. That’s why I’m taking this opportunity to urge a YES vote on two Statewide ballot propositions — Proposition 51 and Proposition 55.
YES ON PROPOSITION 51
Proposition 51 would authorize $9 billion in general obligation bonds for new construction and modernization of K-12 public school facilities, charter schools, vocational education facilities, and community college facilities. Right here in Irvine, where we have so many overcrowded and older schools, we will benefit from tens of millions of dollars to upgrade and modernize existing facilities, and of course to build new schools.
YES ON PROPOSITION 55
Proposition 55 extends by 12 years the personal income tax increases on high earners that the voters approved in 2012. This will apply to earnings of over $250,000, with revenues allocated to K-12 schools and community colleges. This “millionaires’ tax extension” is expected to provide an added $4 billion to $9 billion per year in overall State revenues. Billions of dollars will be shared with school districts throughout the State, including tens of millions of dollars for schools right here in Irvine.
Both Propositions 51 and 55 are structured and budgeted so that your YES vote today will NOT require any new State taxes.
The most important thing: Please remember to VOTE your entire ballot on November 8th!