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SPLOST V for education to be determined by votes in November

JONESBORO — Funding for textbooks and mobile devices has been included in the November ballot question asking Clayton County voters to approve a 1-cent sales tax for education.

The Clayton County Board of Education approved a resolution 8-0, calling for what is being referred to as the “continuation” of the special purpose local option sales tax for Education, voting in a called meeting Monday to place the question on the fall ballot.

SPLOST IV will expire Dec. 31, 2014, ending its five-year lifespan. Voters will decide Nov. 5 whether the sales tax should continue through Dec. 31, 2019, with SPLOST V.

SPLOST V is projected to collect a maximum of $280.25 million over its lifespan.

Officials said the money should help fund several existing and future capital outlay projects.

The resolution states those projects would include the construction of an elementary school and a middle school; the purchase of new buses; upgrades to transportation systems, vehicles and facilities; school safety and security improvements; and system-wide technology upgrades.

Stadium renovations and building repairs are also listed on the resolution.

Board members spoke specifically about funding construction for a gym at Riverdale High School and construction at other schools particularly in northern parts of the county.

Clayton County Education Association President Sid Chapman attended Monday’s meeting. He said he expects the association will support the board’s SPLOST V resolution.

Chapman said there is a general need for safety and security in schools, and specifically a need for textbooks and new school construction in Clayton County.

The board is polishing its list of capital outlay projects that would be funded under SPLOST V.

Board member Michael King was absent from the meeting.