Intent and Content Prepared by the Office of the Attorney General This Act would authorize the State to issue bonds in an amount not to exceed $43,500,000 for interior and exterior building renovation and construction projects at higher education facilities in Maine, repairs and renovations to public schools, and matching funds for capital improvements to cultural and educational assets such as museums, historic sites and libraries. The bonds would run for a period not longer than 10 years from the date of issue and would be backed by the full faith and credit of the State. Proceeds of the sale of the bonds would be expended for interior and exterior renovations, improvements and additions at the campuses of the University of Maine System ($23,000,000); all campuses of the Maine Community College System ($15,500,000); and the Maine Maritime Academy campus ($1,500,000). Proceeds of the sale of the bonds in the amount of $1,500,000 would be placed in the School Revolving Renovation Fund administered by the Maine Municipal Bond Bank and would be expended for the purposes authorized pursuant to Title 30-A of the Maine Revised Statutes, section 6006-F. These include making loans to school administrative units for: (1) repair and renovation of school buildings to address serious health, safety and compliance issues such as improving indoor air quality, ensuring accessibility in compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act, repairing or replacing roofs, and removing or abating asbestos; (2) other repairs and improvements related to the structural integrity of school facilities, such as heating systems, doors and windows; and (3) upgrading learning spaces in school buildings such as science laboratories and vocational spaces and increasing classroom flexibility. The Department of Education would determine the eligibility and relative priority of projects for funding under this program, in accordance with section 6006-F. The remaining $2,000,000 in bond proceeds would be distributed as part of the New Century Community Program administered by Maine's cultural agencies (which include the State Library, Historic Preservation Commission, Arts Commission, Historical Society, Humanities Council, State Museum and State Archives) under the auspices of the Maine State Cultural Affairs Council. These funds would be used to provide matching grants to eligible nonprofit and community-based organizations for capital improvement projects designed to revitalize downtown areas, preserve and strengthen state and community historic and cultural assets and expand access to digital and educational resources. If approved, the bond authorization would take effect 30 days after the Governor's proclamation of the vote. A statement of the Treasurer describing the financial considerations of this bond issue is published together with this statement. A "YES" vote approves the authorization of the $55,000,000 bond issue to finance all of the above activities. A "NO" vote disapproves the bond issue in its entirety. (4211)
Do you favor a $43,500,000 bond issue for interior and exterior building renovations, improvements and additions at all campuses of the Maine Community College System, the Maine Maritime Academy and the University of Maine System; to replenish the School Revolving Renovation Fund for school repairs and renovations; and to support capital improvements for cultural and educational assets such as museums, historical facilities and libraries?