November 8, 2006
New buildings, buses, and books...all possible thanks to last night's vote to continue Richmond County's one-cent education tax.
The school board needs hundreds of millions of dollars for construction projects, school buses, technology, and other learning materials.
Yesterday, 70 percent of the voters in every precinct but one said they want to help foot the bill.
Today, shopper Jay Garrison bought more than electronics. Part of his purchase will help students.
"They need more money to run the schools!" he says.
A penny out of every dollar he paid at the store goes straight to the school system.
That means for every $10,000 we spend, a student can get a new textbook or computer program.
Hephzibah High School Principal Veta New says these tools are crucial.
"We want to make sure our teachers have the resources to not only teach students at every level, but to get resources with the most current information through a variety of mediums," she said.
As an example of why it's so important to keep this stuff up to date, many textbooks still list Pluto as a planet. And computer labs and textbooks cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Tuesday's vote to continue the one cent education sales tax means more money in the school board's budget, which translates to new, current materials.
"This way, we have the opportunity for every school to get something," New said. "Every school, every community."
All this is thanks to the overwhelming majority vote to continue giving Richmond County shoppers like Jay the power to buy students a better education with every transaction.
As a reminder, this is not a tax increase. People voted to keep the current one cent tax that was already in place. You will continue to pay 7 percent.
The money will fund about 60 projects.
In addition to learning materials, it will go toward a couple hundred classrooms, 23 construction and renovation projects, new buses, and panic buttons.
For information on building projects funded by this tax, click here.
To see a flyer in support of ELOST put out by the Richmond County Citizens Oversight Committee for Good Schools, click here.
To read an editorial by the president of the Committee for Good Schools, click here.