2/7 Highlights: Discussion of Potential Parcel Tax

Click here to see WCCUSD’s minutes for this meeting.

Welcome to Board Watch for WCCUSD’s February 7th Board of Education meeting!

This week, our board members are scheduled to discuss the possibility of placing a new parcel tax on the June 5, 2018 ballot. In addition, the board will receive initial bargaining proposals between United Teachers of Richmond (UTR) and the District. Lastly, the board is recommended to approve costs for Richmond High’s Robotics Team to compete at the regional FIRST Robotics Competition in Utah.

Click here to see the full meeting agenda.

1. Discussion of Potential Parcel Tax Measure to Attract and Retain Quality Teachers

Discussion Item F.1. The Board will discuss the possibility of placing a new parcel tax of 7.2 cents per square foot of total building area to support teacher compensation on the June 5, 2018 ballot. Seniors and the disabled would be exempt from the parcel tax.

This parcel tax would go specifically towards recruitment and retention of highly qualified staff and would be shared with District students attending West Contra Costa charter schools for the same purpose. If the Board chooses to advance this to an action item, the District will have an attorney write a resolution and ballot language for consideration at the upcoming February 28thmeeting. A public hearing would then be held and the Board would vote on whether to place the parcel tax on the June ballot.

In 20014, District voters passed a parcel tax that has helped to fund reduced class sizes, counselors, librarians, custodial services, and extracurricular programs. This parcel tax was renewed in 2008 with 79% of voters supporting it, in 2012 with 75% of the vote and in 2016 (Measure T) with more than 76% of the vote.

In 2016 polling, 75.4% of voters indicated that attracting and retaining quality teachers would make them more likely to support the extension of the parcel tax.

Each year, the parcel tax brings about $9.8 million into the District each year. Over the last 14 years, the District has spent the parcel revenue prudently and in alignment with the measure with full accountability through review by citizen committees and the District’s annual audit.

If approved by voters, the two parcel taxes would mean property owners would pay a total levy of 14.4 cents per square foot and bring in nearly $19.6 million to the District annually.

  • Click here to view the Parcel Tax Survey Report from polling in 2016.
2. Initial Bargaining Proposals Between WCCUSD and United Teachers of Richmond (UTR)

Discussion Items F.6 and F.7. The board is scheduled to receive the initial bargaining proposals for labor negotiations between UTR and WCCUSD. This is an information item only. At the next board meeting, this item will come up for public hearing and adoption.

3. Richmond High Robotics Team to Compete at FIRST Robotics Utah Regional

Business / Consent Item D.8. Seventeen students from the Robotics Team at Richmond High will be visiting West Valley City, Utah to compete at the FIRST Robotics Utah Regional from February 27 to March 4, 2018. This competition involves high schools from the western United States, Texas, and Chile. The team will test the robot they built in alliance against other teams. Students learn scientific and mechanical skills as well as the ability to think critically, improvise, react to unforeseen circumstances, teamwork, and orally present their robot to judges.

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