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San Dieguito Union High School District $62 million bond sale a success

San Dieguito Union High School District completed the sale of $62 million in general obligation bonds on June 28, the third issuance of the $449 Prop AA approved by voters in 2012.

“It is by every measure the most successful sale of all three general obligation bond series,” said Interim Superintendent Eric Dill at the July 14 board meeting. “Thanks to historically low interest rates and also the financial market flux related to the Brexit vote, there was quite a lot of demand for these bonds.”

The bonds kept the same structure as the previous two series, with a term limit of 25 years and no capital appreciation bonds were sold as per board policy. The terms will stay within the estimated tax rate of $25 per $100,000 of assessed value.

The district has now issued a total of $339 million of the voter-authorized $449 million.

Dill said as they look at projects to be funded by “series C” bonds, the focus is on academics and long-overdue projects.

In the north-end, two middle schools will get some attention with new science classrooms at Oak Crest and Diegueno. “Rooms will be refurbished and modernized to bring them on par with classrooms at Pacific Trails and what you’re going to see at Earl Warren,” Dill said. “We’ll have some consistently great science classrooms throughout the district.”

With this issuance of bonds, the district has also set aside funds for a second classroom building at Pacific Trails. The district is having the building designed now and is set to get it approved by the Division of State Architects so when the district sees the development happening out in the Pacific Highlands Ranch area, it will be ready to go and meet the needs for future students.

Dill said perhaps the biggest project funded by this round of bonds is the long-awaited performing arts center at Torrey Pines High School — replacing the black box Torrey Pines has had for 42 years. Construction on the new performing arts center is expected to begin in winter 2017.

On July 14, the San Diego Taxpayer’s Educational Foundation released its 2016 School District Transparency Scorecard, which rates how well districts provide information to taxpayers on school bond fund spending and oversight. SDUHSD and its independent citizens oversight committee received a perfect 100 percent score.