Schools, library testing waters

Both conducting surveys to assess support for parcel tax

At their regular meeting last week, on Aug. 5, the trustees of the Chico Unified School District voted to spend $25,500 to do a phone survey assessing whether voters would support a parcel tax for education. If the reaction on the part of readers of the Enterprise-Record’s online report on the meeting is any indication, they can save the district the dough.

As of Tuesday (Aug. 11), 80 readers had posted comments, most of them hostile. If there is a theme, it’s along the lines of: “Are they nuts?” As someone with the Web moniker of “Mad As Heck” puts it, “How’s this for a free answer? ‘NOOOO!!’”

Meanwhile, a political-action group called Yes on Library Funding is quietly conducting its own survey this week, asking people countywide how they feel about the Butte County Library and whether they would vote for a parcel tax of either $40 or $92 to give it a steady source of funding.

Heading up the group is Fred Marken, the owner of Grilla Bites. If survey results indicate support, the group will ask the county Board of Supervisors to put a measure on the ballot, he said. Any tax levy requires a two-thirds vote for approval.