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Posted: 10/30/13

Voters pass $5.1 million
RCS bus bond on Nov. 5

Observer Staff Writer
      Nearly three out of every five voters decided Romeo Community Schools (RCS) could levy a tax in order to purchase 54 new buses over the next nine years.
       Results from the Nov. 5 election resulted in the passing of a $5.1 million bus bond proposal. A total of 2,792 voters (58.5 percent) chose a yes vote, while 1,979 (41.5 percent) were against it.
       In its first year, the bond will levy .07 mills, or $0.07 for every $1,000 on a home's taxable value, and will average .47 mills during its nine-year lifespan. Residents with a $200,000 market value home will pay $40 per year on average for the bond.
       Though taxes will not decrease with the passing of the bond, the district's debt levy will not increase from its current amounts due to previous debt retiring.
       Turnout for the ballot proposal was reported at 18.77 percent, with 4,779 voters submitting a ballot of the 25,465 registered voters.
       The biggest precincts were a mixed bag for absentee voting. In Washington Township, 835 absentee voters were in favor, while 722 were against the bond. In Bruce Township, 253 absentee ballots had a yes vote compared to 309 no votes.
       The $5.1 million will be used to replace all 54 buses in the district's aging fleet. The first phase will be to replace 32 buses in a three-year period at $3.1 million. The second phase will use the remaining $2 million to replace the last 22 buses.
       The average age of RCS buses is 11 years, with the 10 oldest buses averaging more than 184,000 miles. The district spends roughly $300,000 a year to maintain the buses.

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