LIVERMORE — Measure M, which would keep and raise property taxes to support Livermore schools, got the two-thirds vote it needed for passage in Tuesday's election.
With all 74 precincts reporting, the measure had a 76.2 percent approval early Wednesday. "We're thrilled, absolutely thrilled," said Superintendent Brenda Miller.
Property owners currently pay a $120 per-parcel tax approved by voters in 2004. It expires June 30, 2010.
Measure M approves an annual $138 parcel tax for five years starting July 1, 2010. Seniors 65 and older would be exempt from the tax on residential property they own and live in.
Ballot language states the money will go toward school quality; teachers; small class sizes; college, career and job preparation classes; art, music and foreign language programs; computers; l infrastructure and instructional technology upgrades; elementary science specialists; and high school counselors.
The intent, according to the district, is to continue the programs and services funded by the current tax, and also pay for an additional item, computers. Salaries for library technicians, which are paid for in the current tax, would be funded by another source.
The district estimated that if passed, the new tax would raise $3.8 million. The district, which passed the existing tax during bad financial times that saw it below the state's requirement for reserve money, has a $105 million budget this school year and is financially healthy times despite state budget cuts.
No one submitted an argument against the measure in the county voter information packet. The district has said one reason for the measure's placement on the ballot this election was so that there would be time to try again before the current tax expired.
— Eric Louie