Prop 15: increase school funding

Rebecca Aguila

Prop 15: increase school funding

It seems like every election there is a prop or measure on the ballot relating to increasing school funding, and with the COVID-19 pandemic the funding for K-12 and community colleges will decline.

In an article on Pleasanton Weekly, “instead of $3 billion more in funding next year, officials from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration are now projecting possibly $18 billion less over two years for K-12 and community colleges.”

With unforseen COVID-19 expenses impacting the state, “the general fund would plunge to under $100 billion, the level it was in 2011-12, the tail end of the Great Recession.”

Voting yes on Proposition 15 on the 2020 Election ballot will increase funding for public schools, community colleges, and local governments by increasing the property taxes on most commercial/industrial properties worth more than $3 million.

During the pandemic schools had to shut down and readjust to an online only format. Now as schools are preparing for the 2021-2022 school year, schools like Cerritos College are seeing a decline in funding for the budget and are being forced to take out loans to be able to cover their expenses.

Our economy was severely hurt during the closure during quarantine and investing in community colleges will help high school students whom for whatever reason are feeling discourage from attending a 4 year university and decide to attend a junior college instead.

Millions of Californians are unemployed, with the impact felt most heavily on low-income/wage workers and communities of color. Who rely on scholarships and grants to be able to pursue higher education.

“Prop 15 will provide schools with additional resources to meet new challenges brought upon by the pandemic, while helping lower class sizes and reduce racial and economic inequities in education funding,” according to Yes on 15 school and communities first. A group sponsored by a Coalition of Labor Groups and Social Justice Organizations Representing Families, Students and Essential Workers.

Some people against increasing property taxes on commercial/ industrial properties taxes argue that residential properties will be next.

However with research one can find that Prop 15 maintains full protection of Prop 13 for homeowners and renters by exempting all residential property.

“To make sure these protection can never be tampered with, Prop 15 places its protections for homeowners and renters into the California Constitution where they can only be changed by a vote of the people,” Schools and Communities first says on their website.

Prop 15 will close property tax loopholes that benefit wealthy corporations.

​”Since Prop 13 passed in 1978, the residential share of property taxes has skyrocketed from 55% to 72% statewide,” the owners of these properties don’t want to pay the increase in property taxes that has amounted throughout the years.

With the ongoing pandemic the school system in California can use the money to help their students and employees with the arising challenges during this difficult time.

Prop 15 funds will go directly to education. It guarantees that every school district, charter school and community college district will receive additional new funding and that the new Prop 15 revenues cannot be used to replace other funding.

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