On May 17, the voters of Guilford County approved a $1.7 billion school bond – the largest bond referendum for education in the history of the state of North Carolina.
However, there’s a new threat to the bond that could mean school officials never see a dime of that money.
Former Guilford County Commissioner Alan Branson, who won his effort in the May primary to be the at-large Republican candidate for the Guilford County Board of Commissioners, has filed a new complaint against the $1.7 billion school bond on the grounds that Guilford County government and Guilford County Schools illegally used taxpayer funded resources to push for passage of the school bond referendum.
Branson filed a detailed complaint before the election and, on Wednesday, June 1, Branson filed the new complaint calling for a legal remedy: Negate the May primary approval of the bonds.
A Branson win on the issue would mean the $1.7 billion bond referendum would be undone, and, in order to raise that $1.7 billion, the Guilford County commissioners would have to put the bond on a future ballot and it would need to be approved by voters once again.
Branson said this week that it is his understanding that Guilford County Board of Commissioners had been informed in an email that no part of the $1.7 billion school bonds could be issued until the election protest is settled.
If state and local elections officials rule against Branson, he also has the option of taking the matter to court.
The Board of Commissioners held a closed session on Thursday, June 2 to confer with the county attorney about something. However, county officials have not revealed any details regarding the subject of that closed session discussion.
One of the legitimate reasons for the commissioners to go behind closed doors is to protect the attorney/client privilege.
The first step in the process pertaining to the fate of the $1.7 billion bond referendum will be determined in a special Guilford County Board of Elections meeting on Tuesday, June 7 at 2 p.m. The meeting is for “the purpose of holding a preliminary hearing on an election protest of the School Bond contest and any other matters related to the protest.”
For the many interested parties who might like to watch, the meeting will be held in the McAdoo Room on the third floor of the Truist Building at 201 W. Market St. in Greensboro. That preliminary hearing will be livestreamed, with the link to be provided at the Guilford County Board of Elections website:www.guilfordelections.org.
So tired of Republican intransigence. Branson and the rest of the NCGOP who want nothing but to impede public education are so annoying. Republicans will be the first to use and abuse any process they can to achieve their ends, but are the first to cry foul when things do not go their way. I sincerely hope this effort fails and GCS is allowed to move into the 21st century.
So tired of Democrat intransigence and pushing a black/white (non-race) world, the last 2yrs in particular. Whatever proposal, control, or budgetary item put forward should just be accepted without question. No thanks, the world is grey. The ideas may often have merit, but the budget or the execution may have no grounds for social or fiscal acceptance. The players are currently sitting on $300M of funds for schools, with few plans to show for it to help GC education. Wanting another 5X+ makes little sense, just cents and a lot of them. I would quickly vote for another $300M, or perhaps $600M. Will vote no again for $1.7B, with no shame for doing so no matter what the Dems try to push is hurting the kiddos.
This would be a moot issue if the school board knew how to handle money, but they do not. There were school bonds passed not long ago that still have not been spent – what are they doing with this money? Meanwhile you have schools throughout the district that are in terrible condition, that wouldn’t be that way if routine maintenance had been done on them. It also has nothing to do with moving into the 21st century. What matters about being in the 21st century if the building you’re in is falling down around you?
Thank you Commissioner Branson. It is time someone with economic sense tries to undo this disaster.
Not trying to be a conspiracy theorist just speaking the facts. When I went to vote, I voted behind a bus load of students who were being delivered by a Guilford County school activity bus. One of the students who had just voted, voted for three candidates when she could only vote for one. Her ballot was kicked out. The poll judge gave her the option to vote again and discard that ballot and vote again or have that race where she voted for three not count. She chose the later. She has voted for what I suspect she was delivered there to do.
Using county tax dollars to deliver votes, to advertise for a bond you want is wrong and Alston knows that. He, like I, was made aware of the fact when I was pushing for a jail bond. I had to raise the money myself to educate the public on the need. This on the school board and Alston’s part is another example of poor leadership and misuse of authority. Kudos to Alan Branson for protecting our interest. We need him back on the board and another election on the school bond, a fair one where students are not bussed to vote.
You toss red herrings like bags of garbage. Why don’t you speak to one of the high school principals, like Dr. Harris at Eastern and maybe learn that the students were offered a chance to engage in their Constitutional right, but not coerced to vote yay or nay. Would you have an issue if we used our van to transport those same students, or anyone else, to the polls to exercise their rights?
Poor leadership? Maybe that’s why you were voted out at one point.
Maybe there is hope that my great grandchildren won’t have to cough up $800,000,000 for interest and fee’s.
Yay!! About time someone put Alston and his cronies in their place. We didn’t need it to begin with and we don’t need it now. Make Skip pull it out of his own pockets! Where’s all the money from the last monies put towards the schools? Where’s all the lottery money?? Why do we the people have to shoulder the load of frivolous spending. By these.inept people. You go ALAN!!!
Oh, Alan Branson, you are my hero.
Keep fighting for what’s right Alan
Please be true!
Full steam ahead Mr Branson , boy how I miss the Republicans running this Commissioners board!!!!! We had no tax increases ,Mr Bransons tenure on board .And then the Dems took over and first thing on agenda raise taxes.Then give millions and even a billion dollars to school board. They are just like the muses and it’s leaders they don’t know ‘who’s on first’. Also neither group has any reliable accounting people.The are not able to account for dollar’s spent.Wouldn’t it be great if we could get our board back to a Republican board again.
To put this on a primary vote and pas it with only 22% of the voters voting in the
primary should be criminal. At the very least it should have been on the November ballot, where more of the people go to the polls. Go Alan!
I agree with Bill Gray.
Put the 1.7 BILLION VOTE for the schools on the November ballot.
GREENSBORO OPEN YOUR EYES.. this bill will effect all people with property. So your rent, it will effect the owners who will have to raise your RENT.
How much are apartments now?? Around 1k a month.
Greensboro will be building alot more Apartments for the Homeless. Look up the average wage. DON’T MAKE GREENSBORO another L.A.
If you don’t OWN property in Greensboro then you should NOT to able to vote on bonds because… where do you think the money is coming from?????? Property taxes!!!!!!!!!!!! You want a say then put some skin in the game!!!
Who do you think pays property taxes for apartment buildings? The renters. Duh.
I believe this bond was sneaked on to the primary ballot where only 20% of all North Carolina voters turned out. I received recorded calls to vote yes, from the school system without any intel the prior week before primaries. The information on the school bonds was very vague and therefore felt intentional.