Opposition to DeKalb County 'GO bond' proposal

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"No New Tax" was the message Monday night from dozens of protestors and parents at the DeKalb County School Board meeting. They were attending the community input session in opposition to a proposed 15-year general obligation or "GO Bond." Many were also calling on Superintendent Dr. R. Stephen Green to step down now.

Just off the property of the DeKalb County School District, numerous protestors hailed their concerns to all could see and hear. Inside at the community input session, many like Heather Schoeman had a direct message for the board.

"The Superintendent needs to be replaced immediately, drifting aimlessly through another school year just doesn't make sense," said Schoeman.

Dr. Greene has already indicated he will stay no longer than his contract through next year.

Most in the demonstrative crowd, where dozens held "no new tax" signs, said lack of leadership and transparency is rearing its ugly head with the district proposing a 15-year general obligation GO Bond, for millions of dollars.

"Fifteen years of additional property taxes from the GO bond on top of the property taxes we already pay and the on-going SPLOST sales tax is a lot to ask of DeKalb property owners," said Angela Maki, a concerned parent

No one was available for an on-camera interview about the $222 million and $265 million options.

In a statement, the district said DCSD is considering two options for a GO Bond that would need to be approved by the board in November/December in order for it to be placed on a voter referendum March 2020. If approved by the voters, it would go into effect in late spring 2020.

But many, including concerned parent Emily Fiksman, said it's too much too soon.

"Make facilities and deferred maintenance priority number one, look for better temporary solutions while working towards a long term plan," said Fiksman.

Parents complained about broken air conditioners in the summer and broken heaters in the winter, leaking roofs, mold, and other repairable issues at various schools. They are also calling for a forensic audit before the GO Bond is considered.

"A forensic, external forensic audit will be more in place to satisfy the taxpayers of DeKalb County. If they don't take action we are found to meet them at the polls, said Protestor organizer Joel Edwards.