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Opinion: E-SPLOST Vital for Today's Schools

Sean Murphy shares his thoughts on the education SPLOST vote tomorrow.

The water tower may be gone but the motto lives on:  Gwinnett Is Great.  Home to 1,500 high tech companies, 830 manufacturers and 579 internationally based businesses, Gwinnett County is an economic powerhouse. 

Why?  Most will point to a well educated workforce, thanks to our top performing public schools.  Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) is one of the state’s leaders in test scores and graduation rates; last year it was named the best urban public school district in the country. 

In Gwinnett County, education is a top priority for parents and the community as a whole.  A well educated labor force attracts businesses, creates jobs and prepares children for the future.

On November 8, county ballots will ask voters whether to renew the penny sales tax for education.  

Known as a SPLOST (special purpose local option sales tax), it is an extension of Gwinnett’s one cent sales tax on retail sales, paid by everyone who shops here.

If the SPLOST passes, GCPS will:

-  upgrade technology:  ALL schools

-  air condition gyms and kitchens:  ALL schools

-  build, add to and/or renovate 14 schools

-  add 433 classrooms

-  upgrade infrastructure, improve facilities:   ALL schools 

For specifics:   www.gwinnettkids.count.com.

Previous SPLOST funds were used to build 46 new schools, classroom additions and renovations; buy buses; and expand technology.

It is GCPS’ primary funding source for building and maintaining students’ school facilities. If it is not extended, GCPS will be limited in providing new schools, maintaining existing schools and updating technology.

Gwinnett County has many great institutions, none more important to our future than our public schools. I encourage anyone with children, anyone who thinks they need higher quality education, and anyone who understands how a strong school system drives our economy to VOTE YES at county polls November 8. Gwinnett Kids Count.  Vote yes to keep Gwinnett great.

--Sean Murphy is president of Canvas Systems and co-chair of the 2012 Education SPLOST Renewal Campaign Steering Committee.

Courtney November 08, 2011 at 05:09 AM
Sean Murphy 's company will make millions off this vote?? His IT business has business with the county? Vote no against corruption.
Sal Eaglekeeper November 24, 2011 at 05:39 AM
Corruption.... is the Federal Government actions through the Dept. of Education buying off the state and local school boards with federal funding. It is illegal and unconstitutional. A local option tax to be paid by county residents, for county schools, is the correct answer. We do not owe the federal government anything, if we don't take the American taxpayers sweat money...

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