Frequently Asked Questions

 

Why did the beverly hills unified school District call for a bond election?

The schools in the Beverly Hills Unified School District are aging. They are in need of major modernization, renovations, repairs, and security enhancements if they are to continue to serve future generations of students. Significant facility upgrades are necessary if our schools are to continue to serve the community and meet the educational needs of students today.

 

What is the amount of the Measure BH bond?

Measure BH will issue $385 million in bonds at legal rates and levy on average 4.4 cents per $100 of assessed property value. A property owner with a median assessed home value of $1.7 million would pay approximately $750 annually.

 

Am I able to view the beverly hills unified school District Resolution that established the election for measure bh?

Absolutely.  Click here to view the complete Resolution.

 

Does Measure BH enhance the safety and security of students and staff?

Yes.  Funds from Measure BH will provide for more secure school sites.  Measure BH will upgrade the fire systems, life safety systems, security lighting, and door access control systems; and install permanent fencing, electronic locks, panic alarms, and surveillance cameras.  This will significantly improve the safety and security of our students and staff.

 

What Are the consequences if Measure BH does not pass?

If Measure BH does not pass in the June 5th election it will halt the school district’s modernization program.  School construction projects would remain uncompleted, and students and staff would endure the following hardships until such time that another bond passes:

  • BHHS’ students and staff would remain in portable classrooms
  • BHHS’ K.L. Peters’ Auditorium would remain closed
  • BHHS’ Salter Theater would remain in its current state of disrepair
  • BHHS’ new gymnasium would not be constructed
  • BHHS’ new outdoor swimming pool would not be constructed
  • BHHS' Swim Gym renovation would not occur, negatively impacting both high school use and community use
  • El Rodeo’s new Building E and parking would not be constructed
  • Hawthorne’s auditorium would remain closed
  • Funds would have to be taken from the general fund to complete state-mandated oil well remediation thus potentially causing cuts to district programming
  • Construction costs are currently increasing at a staggering rate of 20% per year. The longer it takes to complete construction, the more it will cost the taxpayers of Beverly Hills to do the same work that must inevitably be done
  • Potential loss of an additional $18 million in State Matching Funds on the Measure BH projects. (For example, BHUSD received $6.5 million in State Matching Funds for the successful Horace Mann modernization project)
  • Delays in upgrading ADA work at Beverly Vista

 

Will Measure BH funds be used for the ongoing subway litigation with Metro?

No.  The Measure BH Resolution contains several provisions clearly stating that Measure BH funds can only be used for the items expressly set forth in the Ballot Proposition, which does not include litigation with Metro.  As examples, the Resolution states that the Measure BH bonds "shall be issued and sold for the purpose of raising money for the projects described in Exhibits “A” and “B” hereto." and "shall be used only for the purposes set forth in the ballot measure and not for any other purpose."  Click here to view the complete Resolution.

 

Where is the parking at beverly hills high school going to be placed, why does it cost so much, and IS THE FUNDING FOR parking related to the metro litigation?

There has been no final decision about the location of the new parking at Beverly Hills High School.  As to the amount of funding for the parking, it is substantial for several reasons.  First, since the location of the parking structure is not yet determined, the cost of the parking structure has been estimated based on the most expensive possible location to ensure that there are sufficient funds.  Second, since the funding for the parking is based on a “worst-case” scenario, it includes the additional costs required to implement methane mitigation system and the removal of contaminated soil from abandoned oil wells.  Third, significant cost escalations are built into the budget.  Since the parking structure is not going to be immediately built, 20% per year construction cost increases are built into the budget.  This is all to ensure that there are sufficient funds to complete the project.  If the project costs less than the worst-case projections, there will be savings.  Nothing in Measure BH obligates the District to spend all of the budgeted money, if there is a way to build the parking structure for less.

As to the Metro litigation, Measure BH will not prevent Metro from tunneling under the High School.  Metro’s current plan is to tunnel under the middle of the High School.  Previously, the District submitted plans into the Division of the State Architect (DSA) for the parking lot to be built in this location.  As a result of the current litigation between the District and Metro, DSA put a hold on the plans until the location of the tunnel is decided.  Regardless of the outcome of the litigation, parking will have to be located somewhere on campus.  Therefore, it will most likely be built either under the football field, under the center of the High School where Metro is currently planning to place it, or on or under the front lawn.  While Measure BH would provide funds for the parking structure, it does not specify the location of the parking structure and will, therefore, not impact the location of the subway tunnel.

 

Is Measure BH about reconfiguration?

Not at all.  Measure BH’s purpose is to provide funding so previously planned school modernization projects and previously started projects can be completed.  Measure BH maintains flexibility for possible future Reconfiguration for all BHUSD school sites or to keep the current configuration.

 

What is the Beverly Hills Unified School District’s credit rating?

Beverly Hills Unified School District has an AAA credit rating from Moody's Investors Service. In 2016, the District refinanced a portion of its Measure E bonds. The 2016 Refunding Bonds replaced higher interest Capital Appreciation Bonds (CABs) with much lower interest Current Interest Bonds (CIBs) at just 3.49%. This saved Beverly Hills taxpayers more than $6 million.

 

Who is providing oversight of school bond funds?

To ensure that school bond funds are spent according to law, a Citizens’ Oversight Committee reviews quarterly and annual financial and performance audits. It then makes a public report of their findings available to the community. The Committee is made up of volunteers who represent the entire spectrum of Beverly Hills constituencies, including parents, businesses, senior citizens, and others.

 

What assurances do voters have that theRE will be accountability?

Measure BH requires stringent taxpayer accountability and a Citizens' Oversight Committee that will monitor funds to ensure that all expenditures are in accordance with the specific projects listed in the Measure.

 

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