School District Bond Issues

Posted on 06/01/2020
Students pass by caution tape and out of service sign in FHN hallway

In 2008, voters in Francis Howell approved a $78.5 million bond issue for several capital improvements, including the construction of the new Francis Howell High School. FHSD has not asked our voters to approve a bond issue in the past 12 years. For context, the other four school districts in St. Charles County have all passed a bond issue in the past three years. One of our neighboring school districts has passed four bond issues in the past ten years.

When school districts in Missouri and around the country need to make large capital expenditures like building new facilities or making major repairs, they have to borrow money. Bonds are the way that school districts, fire districts, ambulance districts, etc. borrow that money. When voters approve a bond issue, the district obtains bids and sells bonds to the purchaser who offers the lowest interest rate (and current rates are very low). The funds are used to complete capital projects, and the debt is paid back over time.

This process is similar to a home loan. When you purchase a home, you borrow money at a specific interest rate. You make payments on that loan, which include principal and interest, over time. A certain amount of your regular income is budgeted to make those payments.

Proposition S would generate funds to address pressing facility needs at schools across the District. The bond issue would NOT raise the tax rate, and funds from a bond issue CANNOT pay for salaries, benefits, supplies, utilities, or other operating costs. Passage of Proposition S would require approval by four-sevenths of voters, or a little more than 57 percent on Election Day, June 2.

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