• 43°

COLUMN — One percent sales tax would repair schools

On this year’s election ballot, voters will be asked to decide whether a 1 percent sales tax increase should be added to certain items purchased in Charlotte County.

This 1-cent-on-the-dollar increase would provide the school system with a budget from which necessary improvements and repairs to our aging schools can be made. The need for these repairs and improvements is imminent. By supporting this sales tax referendum, you are acknowledging that the condition of schools, such as our 84-year-old high school, is important to the success of our children and community. Items like replacing plumbing infrastructure, lighting, and roofs at our schools are quickly becoming a necessity; however, without a budget, these items will continue to deteriorate until they cannot be patched any longer. The monies generated from a 1 percent sales tax increase will allow the school system to receive annual funds to begin this work and create a plan for addressing infrastructure needs before they become emergencies.

Robbie Mason

Addressing needed building repairs and improving system functions is critical to our students’ success. A Harvard University study from 2017 states that there is “strong research-based evidence to support the notion that school buildings impact student health and their ability to learn.” Nearly every time I walk into one of our schools, I see so many items that I wish we could afford to repair or upgrade, but unfortunately, the funds are not there to do so.

Your support of the upcoming sales tax referendum will help our schools and our children by providing the school division with funds that will allow us to address needed repairs and system upgrades. These monies are guaranteed to go to the schools exclusively for building repair.

I would appreciate your support for Charlotte County Public Schools by voting “yes” on the sales tax referendum. Your decision will have an incredible impact on our ability to improve our schools and help our children.

For updates on the referendum, please join us on Facebook at YesforCharlotteCountySchools.

Robbie Mason is the superintendent of CCPS. His email address is masonr@ccpsmail.com.