Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How was the project developed?
A: In 2015, Homer Central School District completed the State-required Building Condition Survey (BCS). This survey is conducted every five years and is needed to identify capital improvements that fall into urgent, timely and long-range categories that are both recommended and necessary. Building off of this assessment and our previous Capital Project, the District has been exploring and considering this project as part of its long-range strategic plan and Board of Education Goals relating to fiscal stability and financial planning. This capital improvement project falls into three main focal points:
1) To invest in and maintain our facilities.
2) To maximize and leverage the highest possible levels of State, Federal and other building aid sources.
3) To address enrollment, instructional and learning issues impacting our students today, tomorrow and well beyond into the next 25 years.
The Board of Education had given the Capital Project Committee the charge of presenting a project that would have zero tax impact on the community. After many months of discussion and collaboration with architects, construction management, fiscal advisers and the New York State Education Department, the goal of developing a project with zero impact to taxes was met!
Q: What will this project do for our children and community?
A: The proposed project is mainly a “nuts and bolts” project that was developed to address health and safety issues as well as building infrastructure needs. This project, which among other things, replaces items giving way to years of normal wear and tear such as window replacements, modernizing and upgrading boiler systems, toilet room renovations, roof replacements, parking lot repairs, fire alarm system upgrades, handicapped accessibility improvements. Other improvements include the redesign of the High School and Intermediate/Junior High School bus and parent drop off loops and renovations to the Intermediate/Junior High School nurse’s suite, libraries and gyms.
Q: Why is it important to do this project now?
A: The proposed project is a needs-based plan that was developed to address health and safety issues as well as building infrastructure needs. Plans include replacement of items that have the potential to fail and/or are substandard as they are at the end of their warranties or expected useful life. Upgrading these items now will not only provide better experiences for students and staff, it will allow for our facilities to run at maximum efficiency. If these items are not addressed through this Capital Project, the District will not be able to leverage State funding and will need to use the general budget to accomplish some of the immediate health, safety and system life cycle needs, which may impact taxes.
Q: We've just completed years of building projects. Why do we need this one?
A: While some of our facilities were recently renovated or had additions built, this project focuses on rectifying many underlying issues in our buildings and areas not yet renovated. There are spaces across the District that have not been touched and need to be upgraded to ensure the health and safety of students and staff. The District has the opportunity to continue its investment the community has already made into our facilities at no additional tax impact.
Q: How is this project being paid for? What is the tax impact?
A: This project will result in no additional tax impact for Homer CSD residents and is fully funded by leveraging New York State Building Aid, managing debt service payments, and using the District’s existing capital reserve funds.
Q: If this bond vote does not pass, how will we pay for needed repairs?
A: We will need to diminish the scope of the project and go back to the public with another proposal if we are not successful with the December 14th vote. As stated, the majority of items included in this proposal have been taken from past Building Condition Surveys and are in need of immediate repair or replacement.