Give Wash. schools a better chance to pass construction bonds

February 21, 2019 | The Seattle Times

Washington state’s Constitution, ratified in 1889, required a simple majority to pass a ballot measure authorizing bonds to pay for school construction. The Legislature changed that requirement to 60 percent in 1943 because of concerns about property taxes getting too high.

The Legislature should put the threshold back to 50 percent. Too many school districts struggle to pass a school bond.

Last year, 46 school-bond measures were put on the ballot statewide, according to the state superintendent’s office. Of the 28 measures defeated, 24 earned more than 50 percent of the vote. And 12 of those failed with the approval of more than 55 percent of local voters.

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