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Hillsborough Schools Celebrates One Year Anniversary of Education Referendum

November 07, 2019 - Trending in Schools

Have you driven by Blake High School lately? They were one of the first schools over the summer to receive a major A/C overhaul thanks to the passing of the Education Referendum. EWI Construction completed the work at Blake and sponsored a HUGE 85ft banner, which is now displayed proudly on the side of the school—facing I-275 and can be seen from the Riverwalk.

This is a way for our district and vendors to thank YOU, Hillsborough taxpayers, for supporting the projects taking place in our schools, which have already made an incredible impact on students and staff.

It’s been one year since voters in Hillsborough County overwhelmingly approved a half-penny sales tax to pave the way for major infrastructure projects at school sites countywide.

To date, our schools have received nearly $81 million from sales tax collections. Hillsborough County Public Schools has spent more than $66 million of that money so far on 119 projects. Some of the projects that are completed or are in progress include:

  • 24 air conditioning overhauls
  • 15 roofing projects
  • 7 school athletic tracks
  • 17 playgrounds

The Education Referendum is expected to generate between $1.2 and $1.3 billion over the next ten years. Our district has identified 1,785 projects for completion, including $23 million in safety and security upgrades. More than $20 million will also go toward new classroom technology.

The independent Citizen Oversight Committee, led by former State Education Commissioner Betty Castor and Sheriff Chad Chronister, has been reviewing each of the projects and spending before the work is submitted to the School Board for final approval.

Do you have referendum projects taking place at your school? Don’t forget to share photos of the progress, and use the hashtag #HalfPennyPromise.

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