bond_thank_you_ribbon-02.jpg
The Canyons Education Association issued the following statement Tuesday, May 4, at the public hearing for Canyons District's proposed $250 million, tax-rate-neutral bond. The statement was read by CEA President Tony Romanello:

"The Canyons Education Association Executive Board has voted unanimously to support the proposed $250 million Canyons School District bond. The Executive Board believes that this carefully crafted proposal, which does not raise taxes, recognizes the current economic conditions while moving forward to addressing pressing facility needs.  We also believe that the bond is an excellent first step to enhancing educational opportunities for students in the district while improving working conditions for educators. It is the intent of the CEA Board to recommend that the Association’s Legislative Council ratify this statement of support at their next meeting on Tuesday, May 11, 2010."
Thursday, 29 April 2010 00:00

Headlines: Bond Proposal

Canyons Asks Taxpayers To Support $250 Million Bond
  • Connect2Utah (Channel 2 News), April 28, 2010 -- Canyons Board seeks $250 million bond; strong support voiced by Draper parents who attend informational meeting about proposal
Public Hearing Draws Positive Comments For Canyons District Bond
  • Deseret News, May 5, 2010 — It was mainly a big thumbs up for Canyons School District to go for a bond referendum as a couple dozen patrons gave their opinions to the school board in a hearing Tuesday night.
On Board: Canyons Board Urges Support of Proposed Bond
  • Draper Journal, May 6, 2010 — Members of Canyons Board of Education detail why they are asking residents to support a $250 million bond proposal in a column for the Valley Journals.

Cottonwood Heights Schools on Bond Priority List

  • Cottonwood/Holladay Journal, May 12, 2010 — Change may be coming soon to Brighton High, Butler Middle, Butler Elementary and other Canyons District schools. These schools have been placed on a high-priority list for either renovation or complete rebuilding within the next few years. The construction will have the dual purpose of accommodating the district's planned grade reconfiguration that will help schools focus on getting students ready for college, and updating the old buildings for today's safety and technology standards.
Canyons Proposes $250 Million Bond
  • KSL Channel 5, May 24, 2010 — Canyons Board of Education and Administration invite residents to the last few public information meetings about the proposed $250 million bond, which would be used to build a new high school and improve a dozen other existing schools.
Tribune Endorses Canyons' $250 Million Tax-Rate-Neutral Bond Proposal
  • Salt Lake Tribune, May 24, 2010 — "Utahns are rightly hesitant about going into debt after two years of a recession brought on primarily by people and financial institutions taking risks with theirs and other people's money. But a bond proposal in the Canyons School District to let the school board issue up to $250 million in new bonds is the right kind of debt for the right reasons. Voters would be smart to approve the bond on June 22."
Superintendent Doty Tells Deseret News Now Is A Good Time To Bond
  • Deseret News, May 24, 2010 — Canyons District Superintendent David S. Doty told the Deseret News that now is a good time to issue bonds for school construction and renovation. Construction costs are low, interest rates are down, and "this helps put people back to work," he said. 
Canyons Hosts Public Information Meetings About Bond
  • KTVX Channel 4, May 24, 2010 — If voters approve a proposed $250 million bond, "the district plans to build a new high school in Draper that would open in 2013. It would rebuild or renovate aging middle and elementary schools. And the money would forward the district's plan to better prepare students for college and their careers."
 Cottonwood Heights City Urges Support of Canyons District Bond
  • The Cottonwood Heights City Council has passed a resolution urging support of the Canyons School District bond during the June municipal election. Passage followed a presentation from district officials under the theme of "Innovating, Investing, Modernizing, Maximizing." Designed to provide money for infrastructure improvements and innovative programs, the bond is crafted in such a way that as the older Jordan School District bond is retired, the new bond would start receiving tax monies. This would result in no increase in property taxes while providing $250 million in new funding from the 20-year bond.
 
Deseret News Editorial Board Endorses Canyons District Bond Proposal
  • Deseret News, June 19, 2010 — "Vote YES. This is an important opportunity for Canyons School District patrons to put their money where their mouths are. Many advocates for the creation of the school district decried the poor condition of east-side schools. The fast-growing Jordan District, from which Canyons split, needed proceeds of previous building bonds to construct schools and school additions to keep up with growth on the district's west side."
Tribune Says Residents Would Be 'Prudent' To Approve Bond

  • Salt Lake Tribune, June 18, 2010 — Voters living in the Canyons School District would be prudent to vote "yes" on a bond proposal on Tuesday's ballot to upgrade aging schools and build a new high school. The $250 million education bond would pay for needed improvements to make schools safer and more comfortable. It would not increase the tax rate put in place to pay off the Canyons' share of an earlier bond approved when the district was part of the old Jordan School District. As that bond is paid off, new bonds would be sold for the Canyons projects, making this a tax rate-neutral proposition.
Canyons District has scheduled several informational meetings and a public hearing regarding a bond proposal that, if approved by voters, would yield money for school renovation projects throughout Cottonwood Heights, Draper, Midvale and Sandy. The vote on the $250 million, tax-rate-neutral bond is June 22.

Please plan to attend the meetings hosted by Canyons District:

Wednesday, April 28 at 6:30 p.m. — Draper City Hall, 1020 E. Pioneer Road, Draper
Constituency meeting for Districts 6 and 7
  • Click here here to see KUTV Channel 2's report on the Draper meeting
Thursday, April 29 at 7 p.m. — Brighton High, 2220 E. Bengal Blvd., Cottonwood Heights
Constituency meeting for Districts 2 and 3
Tuesday, May 4 at 7:30 p.m. — Hillcrest High, 7350 S. 900 East, Midvale
Public hearing
  • Click here to read the Deseret News' report of the public hearing
Thursday, May 6 at 7 p.m. — Hillcrest High, 7350 S. 900 East, Midvale
Information meeting for Hillcrest feeder area
Thursday, May 20 at 7 p.m. — Alta High, 11055 S. Hawk Highway, Sandy
Information meeting for Alta feeder area
Tuesday, May 25 at 7 p.m. — Albion Middle, 2755 E. Newcastle Drive, Sandy  
Information meeting for Brighton feeder area
Tuesday, May 25 at 6 p.m. (English) and 7:30 p.m (Spanish) — TBD
Constituency meeting for District 1
Wednesday, May 26 at 7 p.m. — Jordan High School, 95 E. Beetdigger Blvd., Sandy  
Information meeting for Jordan feeder area
Tuesday, 27 April 2010 07:00

Bond FAQs — Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of the bond?

  • Answer: Canyons District voters on June 22, 2010 approved a $250 million general obligation bond proposition -- a first step in addressing building needs and forwarding the District’s academic plan to prepare students for college and careers. Bond money will begin to address $650 million in building renovation and repair needs an architectural study identified in Canyons School District.

Who are the architects for the first five projects?

  • Answer: The Board of Education in October 2010 hired architects to begin designing five school projects: Building a new high school in Draper; rebuilding Midvale Elementary and Butler Middle School; renovating Albion Middle School; and upgrading Sandy Elementary to meet seismic code. The architects are:
    Midvale Elementary School Replacement: NJRA Architects
    Sandy Elementary School Seismic Upgrade: MHTN Architects
    Albion Middle School Renovation: FFKR Architects
    Butler Middle School Replacement: VCBO Architects
    New High School in Draper: Sandstrom Associates For more information please view the Oct. 5, 2010 Board Meeting Summary.

How do bond projects forward grade reconfiguration?

  • Answer: The Board of Education in February 2010 voted to reconfigure grades served in each school level to better prepare students for college and careers. In fall of 2013, ninth grade will move into high school, sixth grade will move into middle schools, and elementary schools will serve kindergartners through fifth-graders. To accommodate enrollment when ninth-graders attend high schools, the District needs to build a new high school in the rapidly growing community of Draper. The move provides ninth-graders with a seamless connection to a rigorous college- and career-prep high school curriculum. Middle schools are being redesigned physically and academically to focus on student support, individualized attention, community involvement and high-school preparation. Elementary schools will focus on basic academic mastery; those with room for more students could offer additional school-choice programs such as specialized early childhood programs, dual-immersion language instruction, or other magnet programs. The Canyons Technical Education Center will be redesigned as a magnet high school offering the full array of core academic courses but centered on a specialized career academy. For more information, view the career- and college-ready plan.

What are the design standards?

  • The buildings will meet all modern codes and be designed to improve indoor environmental quality and resource stewardship.

How will the community be involved in the design process?

  • Answer: Each school project has a Design Committee of architects, District officials, school principals and faculty, and community members including parents, city planners and leaders. The committees brainstorm how each school can be designed to meet academic programming needs. Architects use the feedback to create and present schematic designs at community input meetings, and adjust draft designs based on community input. Designs ultimately will be presented to the Board of Education for approval.

Would the proposed high school in Draper be part of an already existing charter school?

  • Answer: The intent of the Board of Education and Administration is to build a high school that would be supported and overseen by Canyons District.

The bond election is being held June 22, the day of the Primary Election. Do I have to be a member of a political party to receive a ballot to vote on Canyons District’s bond proposal?

  • Answer: No. You do not need to be a registered member of a political party to vote for the proposed Canyons District bond, which will be on every ballot that is given to all voters at the June 22 primary election.

Where would the Draper high school be built?

  • Answer: Canyons School District owns enough property at about 12800 South and 800 East in Draper to accommodate a high school campus.

Cottonwood Heights and Mountain View elementary schools are closed and sitting empty. Why not use one of those buildings instead of building a new school in White City?

  • Answer: Canyons Board of Education is not proposing to build a new school in the White City area of the District. The Board’s list of proposed projects lists a White City-area school as one of the facilities that will be renovated.

Where would children attend classes while their school is being renovated?

  • Answer: While disruptions to normal schedules are inherent in renovation and construction projects, the Superintendent’s staff will work with school administrations and community councils to minimize impacts to the school community. Depending on the project management options, some students may have to be bused to alternative locations during the duration of their school’s construction work. Several facilities that are not currently in use also could be employed as temporary homes for school communities.

What is the length of bond?

  • Answer: The length of the proposed Canyons District bond is 20 years.

How did the Board of Education decide which schools would be rebuilt or renovated?

  • Answer: Members of the Board wanted to maximize the impact with the funds the District could obtain without drastically affecting taxpayers. They also wanted to make sure families in all parts of the district would benefit from the facilities-improvement plan. Board members considered several other factors when establishing the list. Among the influences: Seismic and safety issues; facility age and condition; surveys of patrons and parents; and the importance to the advancement of the district’s academic plan. The Board and Administration are aware of the many needs across the district, and continue to work on a 10-year improvement plan addressing projects that can be done at each school with ongoing funds.

Which schools in Canyons District will be renovated or rebuilt?

  • Answer: The Board of Education has established 13 priorities. They are:
      1) A new high school in Draper.
      2) Upgrade Brighton and Hillcrest high schools.
      3) Rebuild or renovate Midvale Elementary, Butler Elementary, Butler Middle School, Midvale Middle School, Mount Jordan Middle School, an elementary to be determined in the White City area, address seismic issues at Sandy Elementary and enclose classrooms and install air conditioning at Albion, Crescent View and Indian Hills middle schools.

If this bond proposal is successful, will my taxes go up?

  • Answer: While a recent study of Canyons District facilities shows there are approximately $650 million worth of needed repairs at the schools, $250 million is the amount the district would be able to obtain without moving beyond the tax rate that would be required to pay the district's debt. The plan of the district is to layer new debt into the payment structure as soon as old debt is retired. Many school districts and government agencies have used this financial strategy to mitigate impacts to taxpayers. While the bond proposal is designed to remain tax-rate neutral, factors such as fluctuating property-value assessments cannot be controlled by the school district.

Canyons District has existed for less than a year. Why does it have debt?

  • Answer: In 2003, voters in the then-Jordan School District approved a $281 million bond to renovate buildings. However, in November 2007, communities in Cottonwood Heights, Draper, Midvale, Sandy and Alta voted to create a new school district, which eventually became Canyons District. Although no longer part of Jordan, Canyons taxpayers still are required by law to pay a significant portion of Jordan's previous bond debt. Canyons District has no control over old Jordan District debt or its repayment plan. Canyons' assessment, the payment for which will continue until 2022, is $213 million. Three percent of that total was spent on schools in Canyons District.

When would the high school in Draper be built?

  • Answer: If voters approve the bond proposal, design work could start immediately. Students could begin attending classes at the new high school in fall 2013.

Why build a new high school? Why not draw new boundaries?

  • Answer: A new high school in Draper is linchpin in the Canyons District academic plan. A pending districtwide grade realignment would place ninth graders into the high schools, allowing freshmen to take advantage of more academic offerings and extracurricular opportunities. Current space constraints, however, prohibit Alta High School from being able to accommodate an entire class of freshmen from Draper. The construction of a secondary school in Draper, the largest Utah city without a secondary school, provides a solution that eliminates the need for massive and disruptive boundary changes while also making participation in scholastic, enrichment and athletic programs available to more students.

When will Canyons District reconfigure grades?

  • Answer: Grade reconfiguration is largely dependent on the outcome of the June 22 election. A successful bond campaign would mean design work on the Draper high school could start immediately and planning could begin on a districtwide grade realignment for fall 2013, when the new high school would be ready to open. Considering enrollments and available space, without the new high school in Draper, it would be exceedingly difficult to accommodate freshmen in the existing high schools, particularly Alta, which houses students from Draper and already is at maximum capacity. Money from the bond also would pay for improvements at the high schools — Brighton and Hillcrest — that do not have adequate facilities for a four-year high school.

Where do I vote?

However,

How can I vote early?

  • Answer: Early ballots for the June 22 bond election, which also is the date of the primary election, can be cast from June 8-18. Forms to request absentee ballots, which are due the Friday before the election, are available at http://www.clerk.slco.org/. If you live in Alta or Midvale, you'll have to go to Sandy, Cottonwood Heights or Draper to vote early. A picture ID is required.

Why isn’t my school on the priorities list?

  • Answer: The Board wanted to maximize bond funds without drastically affecting taxpayers, and ensure families in all parts of the District would benefit from the facilities-improvement plan. It considered factors including seismic and safety issues, facility age and condition, and importance in the advancement of the academic plan. The board is working on a 10-year plan to address the needs of all schools with ongoing funds.
Sunday, 25 April 2010 18:02

Information On Early Voting

Cast your ballot early if you won’t be able to vote on June 22, when the public will vote on a proposal to allow Canyons District to issue $250 million in general obligation bonds to pay for renovations at various schools and the construction of a new high school in Draper. The bond proposal is tax-rate neutral. Early ballots can be cast from June 8-18. Forms to request absentee ballots, which are due the Friday before the election, are available at http://www.clerk.slco.org/.
Page 5 of 5