LINCOLN, NEB – Lincoln City Council Member Roy Christensen and the Home Builders Association of Lincoln have joined the “Vote No 369” coalition, a group of elected officials, businesses interests and agriculture organizations opposed to Southeast Community College’s (SCC) $369 million bond measure.
“The SCC bond will cost Lincoln property owners $190 million in new property taxes. For that large of a tax increase, we could finance multiple other proposed public projects through bonds, like the proposed brand new downtown library or a “quality of life” bond for parks. Plus, we’d still have enough money left over to pay off ALL of the city’s unfunded liability on the police and fire pension fund. This is not to say that I would support such bonds, but comparing the amount provides context for the massive scale of this SCC tax increase. SCC is a great asset to the Lincoln community, but the tax burden of such a large bond overlooks too many other financial priorities we have in our community. The SCC bond is just too expensive,” said Roy Christensen, Lincoln city council member.
Christensen was joined by the Home Builders Association of Lincoln in pointing out the massive scale and significant financial impact the bond measure would have on taxpayers in the SCC service area.
“The Home Builders Association of Lincoln has been a long-time supporter of SCC’s efforts to create skilled graduates that can contribute to our local economy. But this proposal stretches the bounds of what we believe the Lincoln economy and the housing market can handle. If approved, homeowners will see the taxes they pay to SCC increase by an incredible 52 percent! That kind of increase strains property owners and small businesses and only adds to the rising cost of homeownership in Lincoln,” said Justin Johnson, Home Builders Association of Lincoln president.
In addition to announcing new coalition partners, the “Vote No 369” coalition unveiled a new interactive mapallowing taxpayers to see exactly how much SCC has increased property tax collections over the last 10 years in each of the 15 counties in the SCC service area. SCC’s total property tax collections increased 103 percent overall during that period, but some counties experienced property tax increases in excess of 250 percent. The map also allows homeowners, businesses and farmers to identify how much each segment would pay in new taxes, by county, should voters approve the bond measure. The interactive map is available under the “county district” tab located on the coalition’s website at www.VoteNo369.com.