Opinion

EDITORIAL: Federal Way school levy is worth your vote

A sign near South 320th Street in Federal Way that supports the capital projects levy for the November general election. - Andy Hobbs/Federal Way Mirror
A sign near South 320th Street in Federal Way that supports the capital projects levy for the November general election.
— image credit: Andy Hobbs/Federal Way Mirror

In the November general election, The Mirror editorial board unanimously recommends voting yes for the Federal Way School District’s capital projects levy.

If approved, the levy will fund the construction of a new Federal Way High School, along with new elementary school playgrounds and security cameras in the district.

This is a long-term investment with immediate gain. Residents have an opportunity to bring Federal Way’s flagship school in line with modern standards — and improve the learning environment for students.

Federal Way High School was built in 1929. The building shows its age. Poor plumbing, a leaking roof and years of water damage have taken their toll. With all the piecemeal expansions over the years, the deteriorating structure lacks the safety, security and energy efficiency of today’s schools.

The levy will cost taxpayers about $92 per $100,000 of assessed property value per year for six years.

Total cost of the project is $110 million, and the district has already saved $50 million to put toward construction.

If the levy passes, construction on the new FWHS would begin in 2014, and should last about three years. Some Federal Way homeowners may qualify for an exemption to the levy depending on age, disability and income.

To raise awareness of the levy and the condition of Federal Way High School, the school district has engaged the public all year long.

The public has had multiple opportunities to meet with architects and offer input on design. In past construction projects, the district has demonstrated good financial stewardship with taxpayer dollars. Projects have consistently finished on time and under budget.

Voters can expect the school district to continue that same responsible approach. Vote yes to build a new Federal Way High School that’s adequate for the students of today and tomorrow.

To learn more about the capital levy, The Mirror encourages the public to attend a free community education forum Oct. 18 at Todd Beamer High School. The forum is sponsored by CityVision. To learn more or register, call (206) 462-6644 or visit www.fwcityvision.org.

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Contact The Mirror's editorial board: editorialboard@federalwaymirror.com

 

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