The graph tells the story. A King County Elections graph shows Seattle voters convincingly passing the BEX IV Capital Levy in the Feb. 12 special election with 71 percent in favor. Results are similar for the Operations Levy.
Seattle school levies passing convincingly
Results are coming in from the Feb. 12 special election on two Seattle Public Schools levies and the people have spoken, making it clear the vast majority are willing to pay more in property taxes to support education.
Voters casted ballots on an Operations Levy renewal (Proposition 1) that provides 27 percent of SPS’s daily operating costs including teacher salaries, “textbooks, transportation, security, special education, and student activities, such as athletics, music and art.” The Operations Levy will bring in $552 million over three years.
As of Feb. 14, Proposition 1 had 74.69 percent of the electorate voting in favor with 25.31 voting against. Total Yes votes: 88,906. Total No votes: 30,133
Seattleites also voted on Proposition 2, the Capital Levy renewal (known as Building Excellence or BEX IV) that will be used for renovation of construction of 17 schools, earthquake safety improvements at 37 schools, and security cameras for 19 schools. It will also be used for technology improvements and used to address increased enrollment, according to SPS. The Capital Levy will bring in $695 million over six years.
As of Feb. 14, Proposition 2 had 71.94 percent in favor and 28.06 percent against. Total Yes votes: 85.450. Total No votes: 33,333
In West Seattle, the passage of Proposition 2 means funding for a new Arbor Heights Elementary by 2018 (possibly as early as 2016) and a new elementary building at the Genesee Hill site by 2015 where current Schmitz Park Elementary staff and students will move. The Schmitz Park building will remain standing and SPS made a promise to continue using it for elementary education at the request of the Schmitz Family, who donated the land for the school.
The final vote tally will be certified on Feb. 26.
According to SPS predictions, the average homeowner (with a home worth $400,000) will pay an additional $150 a year to pay for the levies.