What is a school bond?
The State of Washington does not fund the regular building or maintenance of public schools. Instead, local voters must approve school bonds for this purpose. Bonds are used for construction of new schools, property acquisition, rebuilding of original sites and critical expansion/modernization of existing buildings.
Similar to a mortgage, bonds may be paid for over 20 years, helping to keep annual costs lower for taxpayers. Issaquah School District’s current bonds are, on average, paid off in nine years. This shorter duration saves taxpayers’ money.
State law mandates for bonds
State law mandates that bond dollars be used only for building and maintenance, not classroom operations or salaries. Careful bond planning, however, is one critical way districts preserve classroom funds.
For instance, if a roof fails at an elementary school, the cost of replacement can be upwards of $2 million, equivalent to 23 teaching positions. If no bond funds are available, classroom operations dollars must be used instead.
Fiscal responsibility of ISD
In Moody's Investorys Service's rating system, securities are assigned a rating from Aaa to C, with Aaa being the highest quality and C the lowest. Moody’s rating service has recognized the Issaquah School District for strong fiscal management with its highest Aaa rating.
Only 0.45% of school districts nationwide share this distinction, which helps keep tax rates as low as possible for residents. Issaquah School District also has 19 consecutive years of clean state audits.