For the last several months, the Glen Cove City School District and the Board of Education have moved forward with a bond referendum to be voted on March 12.
As we conducted tours and provided information along the way, we have encountered questions that lead us to believe there is a lot of misinformation in the community. Our goal is to ensure each member of the community is fully informed, appropriately and completely, so that all registered voters can cast their votes without question.
Listed below are some of the misunderstandings that have come to our attention, followed by the facts. I also refer you to our district website—www.glencove.k12.ny.us—for a complete and expansive list of information for your consideration and review.
MYTH: RXR and/or the City of Glen Cove will be doing the construction on all projects.
FACT: The Glen Cove City School District is a separate entity from the City of Glen Cove. All plans must be approved by the State Education Department and we must abide by appropriate purchasing policies, and so will be going out to bid for each phase of the projects. Vetting and checking references on all vendors must be done, followed by Board of Education approval. The City of Glen Cove is not involved in any construction work or planning. RXR is not involved in any construction work or planning.
MYTH: The bond is going to cost every man, woman and child in Glen Cove $3,148.00.
FACT: The bond is divided into four phases. The district will bond each phase accordingly.
Payment on the bond will not begin until 2021 and the average cost to a homeowner owning a home with a market value of approximately $500,000 (not per person) is $36.53 per month.
The projects have been grouped together to maximize state aid, conservatively projected at 33 percent, and all projects will be completed in approximately 4.5 years.
MYTH: The extra money from the bond is going toward increased administrative salaries or bonuses.
FACT: All of the funds in the bond are for the materials and labor required to complete the proposed projects. The district will only borrow the amount needed for each and every project. If a project is completed for less than the amount borrowed, the district will borrow less for the next project. There will never be extra money.
MYTH: The district needs a bond today to complete these badly needed upgrades because they gave RXR the PILOT, causing an increase in taxes.
FACT: The district would still need a bond to support these building projects because they are too large to include in the annual budget. The district’s tax levy amount would not change if RXR were on the tax rolls and not considered PILOT.
MYTH: Who will be monitoring the projects?
FACT: Not only will our central administration be monitoring the process, the State Education Department will be monitoring all projects as they must approve the projects, provide the necessary project numbers and supervise the process in order for us to receive the state aid.
Dr. Maria L. Rianna, superintendent, Glen Cove City School District