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Tuesday November 6, 2018 — California General Election
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Special District

Monte Rio Union School District
Measure J - 55% Approval Required

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Election Results


707 votes yes (71.1%)

287 votes no (28.9%)

100% of precincts reporting (4/4).

To improve the quality of education; replace outdated heating and ventilation systems; repair or replace leaky roofs; and modernize outdated classrooms, restrooms and school facilities; shall Monte Rio Union Elementary School District issue $3,300,000 of bonds at legal rates, generating on average $234,000 annually for issued bonds through maturity from levies of approximately $0.03 per $100 assessed value, with annual audits, independent citizens' oversight committee, no money for salaries and all money for local schools?

What is this proposal?

Details — Official information


Sonoma County ROV (Sample Ballot)


California law permits school districts to issue bonds to pay for construction, repair, replacement, and acquisition of school facilities provided 55 percent of voters who vote on the measure approve the sale of the bonds. The Monte Rio Union Elemen- tary School District Governing Board has placed on the ballot the question of whether to issue $3,300,000 in bonds for such purposes.

Money raised by bond sales may only be used for the purposes and projects stated in the Bond Project List set forth in Measure J, following this analysis. Proceeds could be used to modernize, renovate, construct, acquire, equip, expand, or other- wise improve educational and support facilities. The Bond Project List includes a complete list of projects and allowed expenditures. As required by law, Measure J prohibits using bond proceeds for teacher or administrator salaries or other operating expenses.

The Governing Board has certified that it evaluated safety, class size, and information technology needs in developing the Bond Project List. Inclusion of a project on the Bond Project List does not guarantee it will be funded or completed. The District may seek State funds to augment Bond proceeds to advance the Bond Project List. The Governing Board will establish the priority and order in which projects are undertaken.

If adopted, Measure J includes “Accountability Safeguards” that require the Gov- erning Board to: annually conduct independent financial and performance audits; establish an Independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee; and maintain bond pro- ceeds in a separate account in the County Treasury. Measure J further requires Dis- trict Superintendent to provide an annual report to the Board on the status of projects undertaken and the amount of bond proceeds received and expended in each year.

If approved, Measure J authorizes Monte Rio Union Elementary School District to issue and sell general obligation bonds in series, at different times, as projects are undertaken. Bonds of any series must mature within the statutory maximum num- ber of years from date of issue. The interest rate on the bonds will depend on the market rate at the time bonds are sold, but cannot exceed the maximum rate set by law. Bonds will be repaid from property taxes levied on real property within the Dis- trict based on the value of land and improvements on each property. Those taxes would be in addition to current property taxes on real property within the District.

BRUCE D. GOLDSTEIN County Counsel  By: s/ Robert Pittman Assistant County Counsel

The amount of tax needed each year will depend upon the amount needed to repay outstanding principal and interest. The District’s Tax Rate Statement, which fol- lows this analysis, estimates the highest tax rate necessary to fund the bonds is $30 per $100,000 of assessed value. Those tax levies are projections, and could go up or down, depending on a number of factors including the timing and amount of bond sales, and changes in assessed property values in the District.

If all bonds are sold, the total debt service (including principal and interest) will be $7,000,000. The tax will raise approximately $234,000 annually.

A “yes” vote on Measure J will authorize the District to issue the bonds and levy taxes to pay for the indebtedness. A “no” vote on Measure J will not authorize either the issuance of bonds or the associated levy of taxes.

 BRUCE D. GOLDSTEIN County Counsel

By: s/ Robert Pittman
Assistant County Counsel

Tax rate

Sonoma County ROV (Sample Ballot)


An election will be held in the Monte Rio Union Elementary School District (the “District”) on November 6, 2018, to authorize the sale of up to $3.3 million in bonds of the District to finance school facilities as described in the measure. If such bonds are authorized and sold, principal and interest on the bonds will be payable only from the proceeds of ad valorem tax levies made upon the taxable property in the District. The following information is provided in compliance with Sections 9400-9404 of the Elections Code of the State of California. Such information is based upon the best estimates and projections presently available from official sources, upon experience within the District, and other demonstrable factors.

Based upon the foregoing and projections of the District’s assessed valuation, the following information is provided:

  1. The best estimate of the average annual tax rate which would be required to be levied to fund this bond issue over the entire duration of the bond debt service, based on a projection of assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, is $0.03 per $100 of assessed valuation (or $30 per $100,000 of assessed value). The final fiscal year in which it is anticipated that the tax will be collected is 2047-48.

  2. The best estimate of the highest tax rate which would be required to be levied to fund this bond issue, based on a projection of assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, is $0.03 per $100 of assessed valuation (or $30 per $100,000 of assessed value). It is estimated that such rate would be levied starting in fiscal year 2019-20 and following.

  3. The best estimate of the total debt service, including the principal and interest, that would be required to be repaid if all the bonds are issued and sold is approximately $7,000,000.

Voters should note the estimated tax rate is based on the assessed value (not market value) of taxable property on the County’s official tax rolls. In addition, taxpayers eligible for a property tax exemption, such as the homeowner’s exemption, will be taxed at a lower effective tax rate than described above. Property owners should consult their own property tax bills and tax advisors to determine their property’s assessed value and any applicable tax exemptions.

The attention of all voters is directed to the fact that the foregoing information is based upon projections and estimates only, which amounts are not maximum amounts and durations and are not binding upon the District. The actual debt service, tax rates and the years in which they will apply may vary from those used to provide the estimates set forth above, due to factors such as variations in the timing of bond sales, the par amount of bonds sold and market interest rates available at the time of each sale, actual assessed valuations over the term of the bonds, and other factors. The date and amount of bonds sold at any given time will be determined by the District based on the need for project funds and other considerations. The actual interest rates at which the bonds will be sold will depend on conditions in the bond market at the time of sale. Actual future assessed valuations will depend upon the amount and value of taxable property within the District as determined by the County Assessor in the annual assessment and the equalization process.

 s/ Nathan Myers Superintendent Monte Rio Union Elementary School District

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against

Arguments FOR


Our elementary school is the most important asset in our community and should be our number one priority. Quality schools improve student achievement, increase property values, prepare children for a productive future, and create greater neighbor- hood safety. Our teachers and staff do a great job educating local children, but many classrooms and buildings in the Monte Rio Union School District are outdated and inadequate to provide children with the school facilities they need to succeed.

Our school is outdated and major upgrades and renovations need to be made. While facilities have been well maintained, aging classrooms must be upgraded since many do not meet 21st century standards. Measure J would allow the District to improve our elementary school and the quality of education provided to local children. By investing in our school, we can meet today’s safety, technological, and educational standards as well as better our community.

If passed, Measure J will provide funding to make critical facility improvements to Monte Rio Union Elementary School including: replacing outdated heating and ventilation systems, repairing or replacing leaky roofs, improving energy-efficiency by installing solar panels, modernizing and renovating outdated classrooms, restrooms and school facilities, and improving P.E. fields for school and community use.

Measure J makes financial sense and protects taxpayers. By law, spending must be reviewed and annually audited by an independent citizens’ oversight commit- tee. All bond funds must be spent locally and cannot be taken by the State. Also, funds are required to be spent only on our school, not for administrator or teacher salaries.

Measure J upgrades and renovates old and inadequate school facilities, improves the education of local children, and maintains the quality of our community. That’s something we can all support. Please join us and Vote Yes On Measure J!

s/ Dan Fein
President, Monte Rio FPD

s/ Kristin Thurman
Retired Business Owner

s/ Stephen K. Baxman
Fire Chief MR Fire District

s/ Sherry L Pimsler Administrator, MRRPD

s/ Barbara Bickford
School District Superintendent


— Sonoma County ROV (Sample Ballot)

Arguments AGAINST


— Sonoma County ROV (Sample Ballot)

Read the proposed legislation

Proposed legislation


By approval of Measure ____ by at least 55 percent of the registered voters voting on the measure, the Monte Rio Union Elementary School District will be authorized to issue and sell bonds of up to $3.3 million in aggregate principal amount at inter- est rates not to exceed legal limits and to provide financing for the specific types of school facilities projects listed in the Bond Project List described below, subject to all the accountability requirements specified below.


The provisions in this section are specifically included in this measure in order that the voters and taxpayers in the District may be assured that their money will be spent wisely. Expenditures to address specific facilities needs of the District will be in compliance with the requirements of Article XIII A, Section 1(b)(3), of the State Constitution and the Strict Accountability in Local School Construction Bonds Act of 2000 (codified at Education Code Sections 15264 and following.)

Evaluation of Needs. The School Board has identified detailed facilities needs of the District and has determined which projects to finance from a local bond. The School Board hereby certifies that it has evaluated safety, class size reduction, enrollment growth, and information technology needs in developing the Bond Pro- ject List shown below.

Independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee. Following approval of this measure, the Board of Trustees will establish an Independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee, under Education Code Sections 15278 and following, to ensure bond proceeds are expended only on the types of school facilities projects listed below. The committee will be established within 60 days of the date when the results of the election appear in the minutes of the School Board.

PerformanceAudits. TheSchoolBoardwillconductannual,independentperformance audits to ensure that the bond proceeds have been expended only on the school facilities projects listed below.

Financial Audits. The School Board will conduct annual, independent financial audits of the bond proceeds until all of those proceeds have been spent for the school facilities projects listed below.

Government Code Accountability Requirements. As required by Section 53410 of the Government Code, (1) the specific purpose of the bonds is set forth in this Full Text of the Measure, (2) the proceeds from the sale of the bonds will be used only for the purposes specified in this measure, and not for any other purpose, (3) the proceeds of the bonds, when and if issued, will be deposited into a building fund to be held by the Sonoma County Treasurer, as required by the California Education Code, and (4) the Superintendent of the District shall cause an annual report to be filed with the Board of Trustees of the District not later than January 1 of each year, which report shall contain pertinent information regarding the amount of funds collected and expended, as well as the status of the projects listed in this measure, as required by Sections 53410 and 53411 of the Government Code.


Proceeds from the sale of bonds authorized by this measure shall be used only for the purposes specified in Article XIII A, Section 1(b)(3), those being for the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation, or replacement of school facilities, in- cluding the furnishing and equipping of school facilities, and the acquisition or lease of school facilities, and not for any other purpose, including teacher and ad- ministrator salaries and other school operating expenses.



The following statement is included in this measure pursuant to Education Code Section 15122.5: Approval of this measure does not guarantee that the proposed project or projects that are the subject of bonds under this measure will be funded beyond the local revenues generated by this measure. The District’s proposal for the project or projects described below may assume the receipt of matching state funds, which, if available, could be subject to appropriation by the Legislature or approval of a statewide bond measure.


Any estimates or projections in the bond measure or ballot materials, such as relating to estimated tax rates, the duration of issued bonds and related tax levies and col- lections are provided as informational only. Such amounts are estimates and are not maximum amounts or limitations on the terms of the bonds, the tax rate or duration of the tax supporting repayment of issued bonds. Such estimates depend on numerous variables which are subject to variation and change over the term of the District’s overall facilities and bond financing plan, including but not limited to the amount of bonds issued and outstanding at any one time, the interest rates applicable to issued bonds, market conditions at the time of sale of the bonds, when bonds mature, timing of project needs and changes in assessed valuations in the District. As such, while such estimates and approximations are provided based on information currently available to the District and its current expectations, such estimates and approximations are not limitations and are not binding upon the District.


Scope of Projects. Bond proceeds will be expended on the modernization, renovation, expansion, acquisition, construction/reconstruction, rehabilitation, and/or replacement of school facilities of the Monte Rio Union Elementary School District, including the furnishing and equipping of such school facilities. This measure autho- rizes bond projects to be undertaken at all District educational and support sites, including current and future sites.

School Facility Project List. The items presented on the following list are the types of projects authorized to be financed with voter-approved bond proceeds. Specific examples included on this list are not intended to limit the broad types of projects described and authroized by this measure. The types of projects authorized are:



Modernize,renovate,constructand/orexpandschoolfacilitiestomeet21stcentury educational standards, including providing updated furnishings and other equipment to facilitate a modern learning environment

Improve student access to computers and modern technology, including providing necessary infrastructure, hardware, software, computers, devices and other modern instructional equipment

Makehealth,safetyandhandicappedaccessibilityimprovementstoensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations

MakeFederalandState-mandatedAmericanswithDisabilitiesAct(ADA) accessibility upgrades including but not limited to ensuring site access, parking, staff and student restrooms, relocation of existing electrical devices, drinking fountains, playground equipment, etc. as necessary to ensure adequate accommodations are provided and all legal requirements are met


Improve,rehabilitateand/orconstructplaygroundsandplaystructuresand other facilities for school and community use, including providing related equipment

Abate and remove hazardous materials identified prior to or during con- struction

Repair, replace and/or upgrade exterior paved surfaces, turf, and other grounds and outdoor areas, including to eliminate safety hazards and to facilitate outdoor instruction

Upgrade, repair and/or expand school site parking, roadways, grounds and other infrastructure such as utility systems, including installing exterior lighting, repairing pathways, walkways, ADA access ramps, and make landscaping improvements including irrigation

Each of the bond projects described in this Bond Project List include the costs of furnishing and equipping such facilities, and all costs which are incidental but directly related to the types of projects described above. Examples of incidental costs include, but are not limited to: costs of design, engineering, architect and other professional services, facilities assessments, inspections, site preparation, utilities, landscaping, construction management and other planning and permitting, legal, accounting and similar costs; independent annual financial and performance audits; a customary construction contingency; demolition and disposal of existing structures; the costs of interim housing and storage during construction including relocation and construction costs incurred relating to interim facilities; rental or con- struction of storage facilities and other space on an interim basis for materials and other equipment and furnishings displaced during construction; costs of relocating facilities and equipment as needed in connection with the projects; interim class- rooms and facilities for students, administrators, and school functions, including modular facilities; federal and state-mandated safety upgrades; addressing un- foreseen conditions revealed by construction/modernization and other necessary improvements required to comply with existing building codes; access requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act; necessary costs incurred by the District in calling and conducting the election such as County services and legal costs; bond issuance costs; and bond project construction oversight and administration during the duration of such projects, including by District personnel, as permitted by law.

The scope and nature of any of the specific projects described above may be altered by the District as required by unforeseen conditions that may arise during the course of design and construction. In the event that a modernization or renovation project is more economical for the District to be undertaken as new construction, this bond measure authorizes land acquisition, relocation, expansion, and construction and/or reconstruction, and all costs relating thereto, for said reason or, alternatively, based on other considerations deemed in the best interest of the District by the Governing Board. In addition, this measure authorizes the acquisition of real property, including necessary rights of ways or other real property interests, required to expand District facilities, to provide access to school or other District facilities, or to provide additional school or related facilities. In addition, authorized projects include reimbursements for paid project costs and paying and/or prepay- ing interim or previously obtained financing for the types of projects included on the project list, such as bond anticipation notes or lease financings relating to projects and/or equipment previously financed.

Approval of the District’s bond measure does not guarantee that all of the identified projects within this Bond Project List will be funded beyond what can be completed with local funds generated by the bond measure. The District plans to pursue funds from the State of California, if available, to complete certain of the identified facilities projects.

The order in which school facilities projects are listed in the foregoing Bond Project List does not suggest an order of priority. Project priorities will be determined by the Governing Board. The District is unable to anticipate all unforeseen circumstances which may prevent some of the projects listed above from being undertaken or completed.


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