School Bond and Levy: We Say Yes!


We pay them outrageous sums of money and benefits most do not get.

They provide a student graduation rate of 50%

Sorry, Oregon, it's been ten years I've been voting every goddamn election to tax myself more, but I'm done. No more, not the way we've been doing it. Time for a sales tax, coupled with a progressive income tax and actually enforcing the supposed limit increase on property taxes. The "I'm paying for this because my rent will go up" is just trickle-down economics at it's worst (every tax increase has some kind of nominal effect on some other area of the economy). The "creative class" of Portland needs to become part of the tax base. Sorry.

Also, FIX THE FUCKING GODDAMN OREGON CORPORATE TAX SYSTEM ALREADY. If one more tax year goes by and I hear about PGE paying $10 again, I'm going to open a fucking account in the Caymans.

I'm sorry, but I feel like I'm in a freaking abusive relationship with my state/county/city when it comes to taxes, and I'm checking into the fucking shelter already.
I can't believe that a journalist would act like a building in poor repair is the cause of a low graduation rate. I graduated with several national merit semi-finalists (I was an semi-finalist) from a school in a lower income neighborhood. Our building was not in great shape, but my class had several students who sincerely wanted to learn and would stop at nothing. I guess Ms. Mirk has never been to New York. I can appreciate that the Mercury staff wants the best for our schools, but this is a very poorly researched endorsement. PLEASE VOTE NO ON THIS DISASTER OF A MEASURE. HOLD STUDENTS AND THEIR PARENTS ACCOUNTABLE FOR THEIR OWN EDUCATIONS.
Or, better yet, revise the property tax system to be more equitable. What I pay compared to my family members, in much larger spaces, is ridiculous.
"I'm sorry, but I feel like I'm in a freaking abusive relationship with my state/county/city when it comes to taxes, and I'm checking into the fucking shelter already."

EXACTLY! For those of us who just aren't passing through and have repeatedly voted to increase taxes to fund schools (which includes the supplemental ITax from '04 that was supposed to fix all of our problems), enough is simply enough. I can see why a renter wouldn't mind so much, but for those of us who own our own homes (and especially for people like myself who have chosen not to have kids) raising taxes on property yet again using the "think of the children!" canard is a no-go.

Show you're taking steps to solve the systemic problem rather than bandaiding it with temporary tax increases and quit using the $1000 i pay a year in water and sewer rates on things that have little or nothing to do with water or sewer, then maybe I'll consider forking over more money to spiff up classrooms.
This is more or less what the conservative fucks have backed us in to doing. In 1990 ye demanded that Measure 5 go through. In 1997, Measures 47 and 50. Surprise, you can't run the school with no money. What did you think was going to happen when you started stripping the schools of funds? They're still going to need money, but just need to get it in new ways - since the ways that every other state uses are now effectively illegal.

This bill sucks, but not as bad as those three bills the GOP crippled the state with. I wish they would have us vote on repealing those things, but they won't - so now it's time to pay the piper.
What do you think the landlord will do when his taxes double?
@D: I assume the property owners will relinquish their ammoral and insiduous plans to over-burden the proletariat with rent-gauging, the people will arrise as one and smash the state, and Portland will transform like a magical phoenix into a anarcho-Marxist-utopian egalitarian fairy-tale wonderland.


maybe people aren't as stupid as you are and they realize that their rents will go up and are okay with paying into a system that will eventually improve the lives of everyone who lives here.


You're desperate to keep those lower on the socio-economic scale uneducated so that you may continue to exploit them for your own nefarious plans.
Meh, I send my kids to private school and the cost is less per student (by about $3K!) than PPS's per-student fees, and it's by far a better education. The tuition covers nearly all costs the school has, administration, upkeep, supplies, etc.

Public education is important, but there's seriously something wrong with the way its run now. Passing this measure won't help *at all*
I was just replying to Chuck's comment that most renters 'won't mind'
Graham, you are becoming DamosA. You make no sense while calling all of your detractors idiots and morons.
Glad to hear some people around here who actually agree with me for once.

This is just one request too many for me. I've voted for parks, the zoo, community college, countless others I can't even remember.

After participating in numerous elections here, I realize that the requests for more money simply never ever stop, and I just have to start saying no. It's not like we're talking about a tax hike every four years or something. We just voted on another set of levies in November! ("It's for the firefighters!")

And I even have kids who would be entering one of the completely rebuilt schools right around the time they finish it.

As an avid supporter and product of the Portland Public Schools, it pains me that for the first time in 20+ years, I will not vote for a school levy. For our household it is a simple and unfortunate fact: we can't afford that much of an increase on our property taxes. We don't have a spare $600 lying around. Sorry.
I'm done with "the kids".
schools and tri-met have the same problem. they keep asking taxpayers for more money, but the money is never enough.
Yes the renters will mind a raise in rates; the rent is too damned high as it is and I don't even have any kids. So far, I've voted yes for the schools every time since 97', but not this time; this has to stop. I'm done with "the kids" too! Oh, and the same goes for the teachers and the bus drivers... Just can't afford it right now.
it's true that the schools need to be improved. but raising taxes isn't the answer. the answer is to get politicians to prioritize school funding first. continually raising taxes is unsustainable. you think you're doing good by voting for "kids" "schools" and "education" but you're hurting the economy as a whole and loosing many other benefits by taxing people this much. the government is not your friend and letting them take your money and spend it is crazy.
I'm a homeowner and I have no problem with paying more in taxes for schools. It's an investment. The kid who gets a good education isn't going to steal your car. Far cheaper than paying for more police and prisons. Better for the community overall. Better quality of life protects property values too.

penthesilea - see my first comment.

I am starting to think the schools actively make children stupider.

Of course, I'm old fashioned and am of the mind maybe parents play a role in teaching them not to steal cars too.
@D: You are factually wrong and make wild accusations without offering up any proof. I'd say that you're a good indicator why we need to better fund the PPS.
As an aside, I'm guessing the conditions of schools in India would make Roosevelt High look like the shiny new sustainable!!!! building a couple of posts up (great timing on that project, btw) and those kids are kicking are asses academically. Bottom line is good teachers and good methods will prevail regardless if what shape the building us in. Same goes for the opposite.
This is from the 2010 report Graham (from PPS) -

'However, with almost 1,000 additional PPS students attending alternative, charter and special education schools, the graduation rate for PPS drops to 53 percent, the state reported. The statewide rate is 66 percent.'

Is that the issue to which you refer?
Didn't Mayoral candidate Sam Adams promise to step in and fix the high school drop out rate three years ago?
While an admirable goal, given that's not even in the mayor's job description, he sure doesn't seem to have come close to improving the situation.
I'd imagine he gets a pass on that from the Merc though.
I figured as much.
Graham often shuts up when presented with reality.
I already voted no on all tax measures, plus voted for the most obstinate school board candidates just to punish PPS for asking for more money again.
We have been short changing them on budgets for decades. If you want the graduation rate to rise then the schools are going to need money. Think that the schools need to address the problem of growing classroom sizes before we give them funds? How are they supposed to do that without money to hire more teachers, or even keep the ones they have? Maybe you don't have kids and don't care. But soon these kids are going to be adults and you'll see what you paid for. Schools, just like the fire department, are a benefit to society. Would you deny the fire department operational funds just because your house never burned down?