A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

Measure H passed by a landslide

Measure H, the Santa Rosa Junior College $410 million bond, passed by a landslide after Tuesday’s voting with 61.8 percent of voters in favor of the bond measure.

Of the 104,290 counted ballots, Measure H received 64,500 yes votes and 39,790 votes against it.

“I’m very pleased,” said Santa Rosa Junior College President Dr. Frank Chong. “I think it’s something the students really needed. It’s a relief and I’m tired but we had great support from the Foundation and students.”

During a discussion with the Oak Leaf news staff in September, Dr. Chong addressed some of the concerns raised by the public regarding the measure.

One concern was that it was far too soon for SRJC to be asking for more money after bond Measure A passed in 2002, to which Dr. Chong responded, “In the history of the college, we’ve only asked for one bond in the 100 years the college has existed.”

Another concern was that the language in the ballot was too broad and he said it was because a lot can change in 20 years. “We want to have the flexibility to adapt,” he said.

Doyle Library, Plover Hall, Bertolini Student Center and the Burdo Culinary Center are a few additions to SRJC made possible by the success of Measure A.

Now that Measure H has passed, the addition of a new science and math building as well as the modernization of other SRJC buildings will be possible.

“I know maybe current students won’t benefit from the new buildings, but they’ll be there for the little brothers and sisters,” Dr. Chong said.

Dean of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, Stephen Lewis, was excited about the success of Measure H. “The first thing that will benefit is that there will be more classroom space and lab space,” Lewis said.

“Students get slowed down because they can’t get the classrooms they need, so now students won’t be delayed when trying to finish certain courses for transfer,” he added.

With the help of the bond, math and science departments will have the opportunity of receiving state of the art equipment that wasn’t even invented in his day, Lewis said. He also hopes the bond will allow for more teaching facilities that will attract not only students, but also the community, as the planetarium does.

Planning is set to start at the beginning of 2015 when the collection of tax dollars begins, Chong said. “It’s not quite that simple because the buildings need to be built for the future, not for the past or the present.”

Of the $410 million, $80 million is designated toward technology at SRJC. The Institutional Technology Group (ITG) comprised of faculty and staff will help identify technological needs.

Other projects that Measure H will assist with include preparing students for a successful transfer process, retaining high-quality faculty, providing career technical education and ensuring all facilities meet earthquake and fire safety codes.

“I’m glad Measure H passed,” said Associated Student Senate President Josh Pinaula. “To me, bonds aren’t ideal, but with the state of affairs that we’re in I think it was necessary.”

The Citizens’ Oversight Committee will help to ensure that all bond dollars are spent legally and in compliance with declared projects.

“I think we are going to follow the values of the strategic plan,” Dr. Chong said.

Leave a Comment
About the Contributor
Claudia Aceves, Staff Writer

Comments (0)

All Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *