Ballotpedia Releases Annual School Bond and tax Report

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Over $22 billion in school bonds approved in 2012

Local Ballot Measures on Ballotpedia
2012 was a much bigger year for bond and tax measures all around. We saw more bond and tax measures being approved - and for larger amounts - than in 2011.

Ballotpedia has published its annual local ballot measure report, covering school bond, tax, and budget votes held in 2012. The analysis includes 486 measures, seeking a total of more than $26 billion of school bonds in fourteen states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin. The total dollar amount approved was 84.04% of the more than $26 billion in bonds that was on the ballot.

Josh Altic, Ballotpedia's lead researcher for the report, found the contrast between the 2011 data and the 2012 figures to be particularly noteworthy. "2012 was a much bigger year for bond and tax measures all around. We saw more bond and tax measures being approved - and for larger amounts - than in 2011. Looking at school bonds alone, there was an increase of over 30% in the approval rates for school bond measures. In 2012, school districts in the 14 states we looked at asked for a collective $26 billion in bonds, when just last year that figure was slightly over $14.5 billion." Altic also noted that in 2012, the average amount of debt authorized by each bond question was almost 35% higher than the average amount approved in 2011.

Of the fourteen states, California - where voters approved 113 of the 140 measures - had the most school bonds on the ballot. Florida, with just one bond question, had the fewest. That one question in Florida, though, authorized $1.2 billion in bonds.

The complete analysis is available online.

About The Lucy Burns Institute
The Lucy Burns Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Madison, Wisconsin. It hosts two websites: Ballotpedia.org and Judgepedia.org. At Lucy Burns, we believe in the power of information to transform lives and politics, and we’re committed to making the most knowledge available to the greatest number of people. With the help of volunteer editors the quality and depth of the information on our wikis improves every day. We are a community of users dedicated to fairness and openness in politics, on both sides of the aisle. We welcome responsible, knowledge-building contributions from anyone who wants to participate.

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If you'd like more information, or to schedule an interview with one of The Lucy Burns Institute's project managers, please contact Lauren Warden Rodgers at Lauren.Rodgers(at)lucyburns(dot)org.

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