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Vote for Bossier Schools on April 30


Randy Brown

Education is an investment. The way I see it, education is both an investment in the present and an investment in our future. Our school system is the foundational cornerstone of everything that is happening in our community. Education is a key component both in making our community what it is and in making it all that it can be. Education is what makes everything work. Without it, we are going nowhere.

Of course, investment and preparation for a college education are vital matters of importance for so many families. However, we all have to invest in education at all levels. Without the educational foundation developed in our elementary schools, middle schools and high schools, college and career success will be much harder to achieve. And if this investment doesn’t happen, the future is not bright and does not hold much in store for any of us.

As I indicated above, I have always believed that our schools are our future. Without any doubt, I am definitely not alone in this belief. The education that our young people receive in our school system will chart the course for the rest of their lives and the rest of our lives, as we rely upon them to take on the leadership roles in both business and government that will determine our future. If we expect our students to stay in this area for their higher education or to come back home once they finish their higher education, then we have to properly prepare them for the future. Without a school system that is fully functioning with a sufficient number of teachers and a fully equipped support staff and facilities, this will not happen.

On April 30, 2022, Bossier Parish voters will have an opportunity to continue their investment in our public school system, as three property tax renewal propositions that fund the Bossier Parish School System will be on the ballot. The key term here is renewal. These are not new property taxes. These property tax millages are already being paid by Bossier Parish property owners, as they have been on the tax rolls for over 20 years.

Proposition 1 is a renewal of 10.31 mills/$10,591,355 (estimated) that will pay for a portion of the existing salaries and benefits earned by the nearly 2,900 educators and support personnel in the the Bossier Parish School System. Proposition 2 is a renewal of 10.31 mills/$10,591,355 (estimated) that will help sustain the daily operations and maintenance of the 45 schools and facilities in the Bossier Parish School System. This millage pays for utilities and maintenance staff salaries/benefits. And, Proposition 3 is a renewal of 26.57 mills/$27,295,026 (estimated) that will pay for teachers’ salaries and benefits.

In the long run, property values for individual property owners (and even the value of our businesses) rely in part upon the quality of our school system in relation to how our schools enhance our ability to both create and attract new business opportunities to Bossier Parish with an educated workforce. The population growth that results from new businesses locating in Bossier Parish also benefits existing business tremendously. In short, all of these components must exist and work together in order for our community to grow.

The property tax renewal propositions on the April 30 ballot are supported by: Bossier Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, Bossier Parish Republican Executive Committee, Bossier Parish Sheriff Julian Whittington, Bossier Parish Administrator Butch Ford, City of Bossier City Mayor Tommy Chandler, Benton Mayor Shelly Horton, Haughton Mayor Kim Gaspard and Cyber Innovation Center. There is also a 4 Bossier Schools PAC that has been formed for supporters that can be found at:  4Bossierschools.com

As you can see, in my opinion (and the opinion of so many others in Bossier Parish), these property tax propositions must be renewed. So, Saturday April 30 is a critical day/date in Bossier Parish in terms of the future of the Bossier Parish School System and in turn, the future of Bossier Parish. Early voting begins on Saturday April 16 and ends on Saturday April 23. Please vote. And, please vote for our future!

Randy Brown is Regional Publisher and Executive VP of Specht Newspapers, Inc.

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