District 207 seeks to address its highest priority capital facility needs, including improvements to all three of its high schools: Maine East, Maine West and Maine South.
Maine East, Maine West and Maine South are 89, 59 and 54 years old.
The primary renovations proposed for each high school include:
District voters approved a building bond measure in 1973—nearly 45 years ago.
The cost to replace the high schools would be dramatically more expensive than the current plan.
Construction and borrowing costs continue to go up. Costly emergency repairs are also on the rise. The longer the District waits to address its highest priority capital facility needs, the more it will cost.
District 207 has been trying to address repairs and renovations. In fact, in just the past five years, $33.6 million of funds were used to address building repairs and upgrades. This included projects like replacing outdated roofing, HVAC systems, elevator master controls, fire hydrants, boilers, parking lot repaving, and concrete repairs, among others.
Yes, the proposal calls for building renovations that are specific to each high school. This includes security improvements beyond the front entrance, auditorium upgrades, pool upgrades to address code requirements, among others. A list of the proposed improvements and floor plans are available on the District’s website at www.Maine207.org.
There are many anticipated benefits of the proposed improvements, including:
District 207 has already invested almost $34 million in building improvements in recent years and is allocating another $45.7 million toward the current package of proposed improvements. Voters are being asked to support a $195 million bond measure as well.
District 207’s reserves would also be used to cover any cost overruns.
Yes, the proposed improvements will provide equity across all three schools.
There are insufficient reserves to address all of the proposed improvements. The District must retain enough reserves to address unforeseen emergency expenditures, eliminate the need for short-term borrowing to fund day-to-day operations, and protect the District’s strong “AAA” credit rating.
The estimated tax impact of the 20-year, $195 million bond measure is $7.59 per month per $100,000 of a home’s market value.
Residents can calculate the tax impact on their individual home by visiting: www.maine207.org/calculator/
All spending from a voter-approved bond measure will be publicly disclosed and project updates will be presented at community information meetings and on the District 207 website.
District 207 retained Illinois-based Wight & Company, an architecture, engineering and construction services firm, to assist in-house facilities staff in identifying and ranking the District’s capital facility needs. As part of their planning efforts, Wight & Company conducted a comprehensive survey of District 207 staff and students to further refine and rank capital facility needs. Architects met with every academic department. Administrators and staff also toured other suburban schools.
A 45-member Citizen Task Force—comprised of community members, business, civic and educational leaders, parents, senior citizens, and other stakeholders—has also helped vet the proposed improvements as well as the financing options. The District also conducted public opinion research, including both a mail survey and phone poll. Community input was also gathered at community information meetings that included tours of each high school.
Election Day is Tuesday, November 6, 2018.
Traditional early voting is from October 22 to November 5, 2018.
Early voting locations are available online at https://www.cookcountyclerk.com/service/early-voting-locations.