On the ballot for the Nov. 5 mail-in election were two measures from school districts serving Chandler families—Mesa Public Schools and Chandler USD. Both questions on the ballot passed, according to final totals from the Marciopa County Recorder's Office released Nov. 8.
Chandler USD asked voters to approve a $290 million bond, the largest-ever bond in the district. District officials said the funds would go toward safety and security updates, the building of a new elementary and high school, modernization of older facilities, buses and more. With 45,927 ballots cast, Chandler USD's bond approval was at 63% in the final tally.
The district broke down what the bond dollars would fund into four main categories: $225.5 million for construction, acquisition, additions and/or improvements to new and existing schools; $25 million for the purchase of air-conditioned buses; $31.75 million for the purchase of technology, furniture, equipment and miscellaneous school furnishings; and $8 million for the construction, acquisition, additions and/or improvements to new and existing administrative facilities including technology, furniture and equipment. Chandler last passed a bond in 2015 for about $196 million.
Mesa Public Schools asked voters to approve a 15% budget maintenance and operations override, also known as a budget increase, to support competitive staff salaries, safety and security updates, and smaller class sizes.
With 75,956 ballots cast, Mesa Public Schools' override approval was at 55% on Nov. 8.
Mesa asked for an additional 5% budget increase this year on top of an existing increase of 10% that has been in place since 1995 for the total of 15%. The budget increase is for the district’s maintenance and operations budget, which covers teacher salaries and programming for students. The total 15% increase would provide $54 million per year for five years, then phase down by one-third each in years six and seven. Voter turnout in Chandler was just over 29% and was just under 28% in Mesa, according to the recorder's office.