DuPage County ballot features facility questions
From a proposed indoor swimming pool at Lake Park High School to a plan to make numerous improvements to Glenbard High School District 87's schools, DuPage County primary voters will be asked to weigh in Tuesday on several ballot questions.
The biggest question on the ballots is District 87's request to borrow $35 million to help pay for $100 million in facilities upgrades and renovations.
The money could help fund big-ticket improvements such as air-conditioning for Glenbard East and Glenbard West high schools, fixes for roofs and parking lots, and updates to science labs across the district, Superintendent David Larson said.
If voters approve the borrowing request, Larson said, the district will be able to spend between $12 million and $15 million a year each of the next five years on work such as locker room and restroom renovations, safety and security upgrades to building entrances, upgraded mechanical rooms and increased capacity for computer electrical power distribution.
Taxes will not increase if voters approve the new loan because other debt is soon to be paid off.
If voters reject the plan, taxes could decrease by $24 starting with the 2018 tax bill for the owner of a $265,500 home, which is the median value in the district.
Lake Park pool
In Lake Park High School District 108, voters will see two ballot questions related to the potential construction of a 23,500-square-foot indoor aquatic center at Lake Park's east campus in Roselle.
This is the latest in a string of several attempts by the school to gain voter support for construction of a pool to give a home to its swimming and diving teams and provide opportunities for water safety education.
Plans call for the $9.1 million facility to be available for public lap swimming times and use by park districts in Bloomingdale, Itasca, Medinah and Roselle.
The first ballot question asks permission for the school to borrow $8.5 million to build the aquatic center with an eight-lane competition pool and diving well and a smaller pool with warmer water. The second question has wording mentioning the property tax extension limitation and the consumer price index, but Lake Park officials say it's asking for a tax rate increase to bring in an additional $390,000 a year for pool maintenance, operation and staffing.
If both questions are approved, the pool could be built by August 2015, and taxes could increase a total of $25.04 a year for the owner of a $200,000 home and $37.56 a year for the owner of a $300,000 home.
Winfield sales tax
Winfield is asking voters to approve a sales tax increase to raise money to help pay for road improvements.
Last year, voters approved a quarter-cent sales tax boost for the roads. This year, the village is asking for voter approval to raise the percentage by another 0.25 percent, bringing the total local sales tax to 7.75 percent.
If the latest sales tax increase is approved, it's expected to generate roughly $75,000 a year in additional revenue for the village. Grocery and medication sales would be exempt from the tax.
The village currently uses about $250,000 from the motor fuel tax and about $100,000 to $200,000 from its budget to repair an average of 1 to 1.5 miles of its 34 miles of roads each year.
Residents of unincorporated Winfield Township will be asked to weigh in on an electric aggregation question that asks if officials should be given permission to negotiate better electric rates on their behalf.
Many municipalities throughout the state already have sought approval for similar referendum questions, which allow officials to bundle residential and commercial retail accounts to buy electricity in bulk from an alternative electric supplier, usually resulting in lower rates.
Winfield Township's ballot question is nonbinding, which means the board of trustees ultimately will decide whether the township moves forward with electricity aggregation if voters support the idea.
The Oakbrook Terrace Fire Protection District is seeking permission to borrow $2 million that would be repaid over 10 years with property taxes.
If voters approve the request, the money would allow the district to improve its facilities, repair and maintain its fleet of fire and emergency medical vehicles, and maintain its existing staffing levels.
The $2 million loan would cost the owner of a $250,000 house about $40 annually for 10 years, officials have said.