In response, residents filed a rebuttal to the ballot measure directed against Measure S

The Redwood City School District will not change the language it plans to use on the November bond ballot measure known as Measure S even after residents pointed out that the ballot as written could mislead voters into thinking that the funds could be used for other items.

In response, residents filed a rebuttal of ballot measure directed against the S measure, citing the language as “misleading”.

The ballot label — what voters will see when they go to the polls to vote on the bond — asks voters to approve $298 million “with annual audits, citizen oversight, no money for trustees and all remaining local funds”.

Patricia Love, executive director of strategy and communications for the county of education, said bond funds can be used for facility infrastructure but cannot be used for administrator salaries, teacher salaries or university programs, as required by California law.

The rebuttal, filed Friday, Aug. 26, points to the average drop in daily attendance and registrations in the district over the past five years and questions whether it would make sense to ask voters to pay for “buildings rather than buildings.” teachers and university programs.

The law is clear, but the ballot measure is not, Chris Robell, a Redwood City resident and retired chief financial officer, said at an August RCSD board meeting. speaking out against Measure S the night members were voting on the bond. Robell authored the rebuttal against the Measure S bond.

Robell told members it was important to be specific about the language used in the bond resolution, particularly how the bond cannot be used for administrator salaries, teacher salaries or programs. academics.

Robell argued that the district should either remove the phrase “no money for administrators” entirely, or include the words “teacher salaries or college programs” after the word administrators to make it clear that funds cannot be used for these items.

A “catch-all”

However, Love said it was unsurprising that the ballot label only used the word “administrators” and did not include “teacher salaries or college programs.”

The word “directors” could be used as a kind of “catch-all,” she said, adding that ballot metrics have a 75-word limit.

Redwood City resident Donna Adams said in an interview that she was also opposed to language in the bond ballot.

“They are written somewhat misleadingly; They just confuse people,” Adams said. “And that leads you to believe one thing when in fact, if you take the time to read the other documents, you are actually voting for something else.

“And that part is kind of daunting,” she added.

In 2015, the district used the same language for its $193 million Measure T bond.

The deadline to change or withdraw a bail order was Wednesday August 17, but the RCSD had until Monday August 22 at 5 p.m. to file a writ of warrant with a judge to change the language, a doorman said. -say the County Elections Office. .

Asked Thursday after the deadline expired about the language used on the ballot, a district spokesman said he was talking to legal counsel about whether he would change it.

But on Friday afternoon, the district said it had decided to keep the language, opting instead to update all of its newsletters and briefing materials “to include additional examples of operations for which funds cannot be used, such as teacher salaries and benefits and education program operations.

“While the district’s request to adjust the language is appreciated, the law is clear that bond funds can only be used for facility repairs and improvements as directed in the measure,” said doorman Jorge Quintana. -spokesman of the district, in an e-mail.

“The Full Ballot Text is the full statement of the measure that provides full details to voters about the measure. This language will be included in the ballot that all voters will receive,” he added.

The district also sent out a newsletter on Friday, August 19, reiterating how bond funds could be used.

Robell said he was disappointed the district “chose not to correct a misleading statement.”

Other residents of Redwood City filed a plea in favor of the bond RCSD Measure S, including the new member of the District Council 4 Elmer Martínez Saballos.

“With strong community support, students continue to thrive in our local schools. However, all of our local elementary and middle schools are between 50 and 100 years old and need repairs and improvements to meet current standards and continue to provide quality education to students,” the argument reads.