Con statement (EP&O Levy)

The following was submitted as the con statement regarding the February 2022 Everett SD EP&O Levy for the voters' pamphlet.

Everett voters should never approve another levy. Ever. After years of complaining – and winning in court – that dependence on levies is unconstitutional, the Everett School District has done everything it can to ensure its dependence on levies will continue forever. There are two common myths that need to be addressed.

The myth of underpaid teachers. For ESD teachers, for 2019-2020, the median total compensation was $150,000 and the highest around $200,000. And, they want this increased again, in 2 years, to 15% or more paid for by you from this levy.

The myth of underpaid administrators. For ESD administrators, for 2019-2020, the median total compensation was $200,000 and the highest was $375,000. Total compensation includes salary, insurance benefits, payroll taxes and pension funding, all paid for by taxpayers.

Dollars from this levy would be dumped into the General Fund where 85% goes to compensations for all district employees, not just nurses. This levy amount is above what is legally allowed. The ESD is counting on Olympia to raise the levy lid later. The ESD needs reining in. ESD’s taxpayer cost charts showing a flat rate are laughable. A flat rate multiplied by skyrocketing assessed property values equals skyrocketing property taxes. For an honest cost analysis ESD’s salaries are already generous. To demand yet another increase, on the backs of hardworking Everett area citizens, is wrong. Vote no on this levy.

Janelle Burke
Jeannie Magdua
Jeff Heckathorn