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Bonds for Century construction paid off

The Hillsboro School District will make its final collection on a 20-year-old bond this week, with this year’s property taxes covering the last $2.9 million in bond debt, according to Beth Graser, the district’s communications director.

The bond paid for the construction of Century High School, which opened in 1998 and is now Hillsboro’s largest high school with a current enrollment of 1,714 students.

Voters approved a request to sell $35.8 million worth of general obligation bonds in November 1994 to build Century and complete other small projects.

The bond was refinanced to a lower interest rate in 1998, and currently accounts for 28 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value in the combined bond rate for property owners, according to the school district.

The district added Liberty High School in 2003. Hillsboro’s other two high schools are Hillsboro High School and Glencoe High School.

As the city’s population continues to grow, the district is eyeing South Hillsboro as the next area for possible new school construction, said Graser, who pointed out that the district already owns 40 acres in South Hillsboro and has an option to buy 10 more.

“Our plan is to build four elementary schools and a middle school there,” Graser explained. “We are also actively looking for acreage in that area upon which we could build a new high school.”

The district is asking voters this month to approve a $25 million bond to buy new technology for schools and upgrade infrastructure across the district. New school construction is not part of that bond package.

A proposal for another construction bond could come in 2018, according to district officials.

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