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Survey shows support for fall bond measure

Tigard-Tualatin School District's $291 million bond measure would rebuild several schools and improve security in light of school shootings.

Voters in the Tigard-Tualatin School District appear poised to support a proposed school district bond measure expected in this fall’s general election, according to a new district survey.

On Monday, the district unveiled the results of a phone survey it conducted in May, which polled 300 people across the district about how they felt about the planned $291 million bond measure expected to come before voters in November.

If passed, the bond would pay for a host of projects across Tigard and Tualatin, including construction of a new school on Bull Mountain, rebuilding several other schools to make them safer in the wake of an uptick in mass shootings, and adding new curriculum and technology to classrooms.

According to the survey, which was conducted by CFM Strategic Communications Inc., about 64 percent of those surveyed said they would support the project once they learned about the measure. About 31 percent of those surveyed opposed it, saying that the district needed to better manage the money it had in order to pay for the projects.

Those results are similar to the last major school bond the district held in 2002, said district spokeswoman Susan Stark Haydon. That bond measure paid for the construction of Alberta Rider Elementary School, rebuilt three other schools and made major additions to Tigard and Tualatin high schools and Hazelbrook Middle School.

The district also held an online survey open to the public. That survey, while not scientific, showed a 56 percent favorability rating among respondents.

Both surveys showed strong support for each of the individual projects on the bond, including major improvements at Tigard High, and rebuilds of Twality Middle School and Templeton Elementary.

The CFM survey had a margin of error of 5.8 percent.

According to Stark Haydon, the bond would increase the current tax rate by 37 cents per 1,000 of assessed value, about $111 a year for a $300,000 home, or an additional $9.25 per month.

School Board member Barry Albertson said that the measure is already a hit with some member of the community.

“We’ve got momentum,” Albertson told school board members on Monday. “Everybody I’ve talked to has been very supportive. They know that it will be more expensive if we have to do it later. I don’t have to sell it much when I talk to people.”

School Board Vice Chairwoman Maureen Wolf said that the numbers were encouraging, but stressed that supporters of the measure should spread the word.

“We need to make sure that we get out and communicate to supplement what the district does to inform people,” she said. “This is super exciting, but we want to make sure we, as elected officials, get out and advocate to support this.”