November 8 Presidential Election

   As we go to the polling booth on November 8, or vote by mail-in ballot, to elect the President of our Country, we will also elect our representative to the Capo Unified School District. 
    Currently Mr. Jim Reardon is our representative serving as the Vice President of the Board. He is being challenged by Gould Workman. 
    We all have come to know Mr. Reardon’s past four years’ accomplishment including lowering Ladera Ranch residents Mello Roos tax. 
    I have no doubt Mr. Reardon will be re-elected.
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Measure M $889 Million Bond
    On November 8, the voters in CUSD territory will vote yes or no on the Measure M Bond issue. 
    As I wrote in my October article this is another Tax over the property tax and Mello Roos we pay in Ladera. 
    So Measure M, if passes will create a triple tax for Ladera Resident. This Bond will be paid off in 25 years and when paid off at the current interest rate it will be close to $1.8 billion. 
    I do not think residents of Ladera will benefit from this bond as schools are about 15 years old. I am opposed to Measure M.

Goddard School Nationally Recognized As 21st Century Learning Exemplar

    P21, The Partnership for 21st Century Learning, designated The Goddard School (photo above) as an exemplar school for 2016-2017. 
    The Goddard School received this honor for exemplary 21st century learning practices in preparing students for success in college, career, and life.
    P21’s 21st Century Learning Exemplar Program searches for and shares the stories of schools and districts that have successfully transformed student learning through innovative practices such as distributed leadership and community partnerships. 
    Michael Smithers (insert), Owner of the Goddard School of Ladera Ranch said, “We are very excited to be offering Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics in a preschool environment.  Our parents are blown away by what their students are able to do, comprehend, collaborate and share.  Our students connect to their outside world and we are proud to provide a high quality environment.”
    “All learners deserve to grow in a 21st Century Learning environment,” stated Dr. Helen Soulé, P21 Executive Director. “It is P21’s vision for the innovative practices in education exhibited by all P21 Exemplars to be replicated across the country and world.” 
    In the Spring of 2017, a case study on The Goddard School and other 2016-2017 P21 Exemplars will be published.

South Orange County Economic Coalition announced its opposition to Measure M

 The South Orange County Economic Coalition (SOCEC) has announced its opposition to the Capistrano Unified School District (CUSD) General Obligation bond proposal that voters will consider in November.  

Measure M, if passed, would generate $889 million in general obligation bonds, matched by $229 million from the state, to fund unspecified school facility improvements. The bond would be paid back through an estimated tax levy of $43 per $100,000 of assessed value over 35 years. Including interest and fees, property owners and local business owners would pay back a total of approximately $1.8 billion.  

This tax would be in addition to the Mello-Roos tax already being paid in many communities within the District. This includes the Glenwood community in Aliso Viejo, the city of Rancho Santa Margarita and the Talega community in San Clemente, which would essentially be triple-taxed if this bond were to pass.  “Businesses and employers are already hard pressed to compete effectively in our climate of high taxes and regulations,” said Wayne Brown, SOCEC’s Governmental Affairs Director. “Adding a bond of this magnitude could force job creators out of the region and negatively impact our economic growth.”  

This tax also threatens to impact local property values.  “Facing the prospect of paying nearly $400 annually for a $900,000 house will make prospective home buyers think twice before buying in this District,” explained Brown.  Other factors that weighed into the SOCEC Board’s decision include: • Businesses and renters will pay higher rents as landlords pass on the costs of higher taxes. • This bond would also tax unsecured property such as office furniture and fixtures; business improvements; boats, jet skies, RVs and other personal property. 

Cities, special districts such as water districts and other public agencies will experience reduced borrowing power as a result of the bond.  The SOCEC has long supported more investment in the region’s future workforce and ensuring that our local schools, which rank among the top in the state, have the facilities they need. But there’s little evidence proving that this extremely large bond amount is necessary.  

“We’d be more supportive of a smaller, more realistic bond total that allows the District to leverage state matching funds and address the most critical facilities improvements,” concluded Brown. “But $1.8 billion is not an appropriate ask of this community nor do we believe it’s all needed at this time. So we urge voters to reject this measure and have the District come back with a more appropriate proposal.”  About the South Orange County Economic Coalition  The South Orange County Economic Coalition serves as the leading voice for business throughout the region. Through advocacy, education and representation, SOCEC works to advance policies and legislation that promote a strong south Orange County economy and business climate. For more information, visit

    As I write my November column, I was delighted to hear from a reader how he enjoys my articles in Ladera Times. 
    I was working out at the 24 Hour Fitness Center when he stopped me to give me an unsolicited compliment. How nice.
    This gentleman, who lives in Ladera Ranch, is in the dental profession. 
    His comments humbled me. I forgot to ask his name. I request you sir, when you see me next, please give me your name.
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    All schools are in the preparation stage for the upcoming holiday closures, and the Home Coming festivities are in progress. 
    On a few Fridays, I saw students as couples dressed to the nines, eating dinner before going to the Home Coming dance. 
    The High School football games are being played and Tesoro and San Juan Hills players are performing commendably well.
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    On September 28, the Trustees of Capo Unified School District voted to end the 1987 enacted Mello Roos tax for Aliso Viejo and Mission Viejo residents.
    The $100 million Bond was used to build schools with infrastructures. The final payment on the Bond was made on September 1.
    This tax could have continued indefinitely as politiians are wont to do. This action saved the tax payers about $42 million, and one Mello Roos District has been eliminated.
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    The Board of Trustees promoted Jeremy Davis as the Chief Technology officer, effective October 13.
    The Board also appointed Jashua Wellikson as Principle of Esencia K-8 School which will open in 2018 – 19 school year. 
    Mr. Wellikson will assume his role in January 2018. Currently he is the Principle of Don Juan Avilla middle school.