Voters in Happy Valley School District will decide whether to extend an annual $99 parcel tax with Measure G in the March 5 election. The district is in unincorporated Santa Cruz County, east of Scotts Valley. It includes one school, Happy Valley Elementary School.

What is Measure G?

Measure G is an annual $99 flat-rate tax on property owners. The measure needs more than two-thirds of the vote to be adopted. 

Measure G as it appears on the March 5 ballot: “To support academic excellence for Happy Valley students without increasing the current tax rate, maintain quality art and music programs, integrate modern technology into classrooms, retain high quality teachers and provide local funding that cannot be taken by the State, shall Happy Valley Elementary School District’s measure be adopted renewing its existing parcel tax for eight years at the same rate of $99 per parcel raising approximately $61,000 annually with an exemption for seniors and with citizens’ oversight?”

What would Measure G do?

A $99 parcel tax approved in 2018 is set to expire this year. Measure G would extend the tax until 2032. It would continue to raise about $61,000 annually. The money could be used for staff and teacher salaries, student technology, and school programs, but it would not be spent on buildings or other facilities.

What does a “yes” vote mean?

A “yes” vote would approve the extension of a $99 parcel tax until 2032. 

What would a “no” vote mean?

A “no” vote would not extend the parcel tax. If Measure G is not adopted, the $99 parcel tax will end this year. 

Thing to consider about Measure G:

  • School district leaders would continue to report annually on how parcel tax money was spent.
  • An oversight committee would continue to review parcel tax expenditures.
  • Homeowners age 65 and older who live on their property would be exempt from the tax. Any owner granted an exemption from the 2018 parcel tax would continue to be exempt.

The tax legally could be spent only on purposes listed in the measure. Those purposes include:

  • Supporting art and music programs.
  • Supporting classroom instruction. 
  • Integrating technology into classrooms. Purchases could include laptops, iPads, science lab materials and other technology, said Happy Valley School District Superintendent Michelle Stewart in an interview.
  • Attracting and retaining qualified teachers and staff. If voters approve Measure G, the district may hire an extra teacher to support math or science, Stewart said.

“Our General Fund is running at a deficit for the next three years,” Stewart said. “Without the parcel tax, we just will not be able to offer the same quality.” Parcel tax money is held separately from the General Fund, she said.

No official arguments against Measure G were submitted to the Santa Cruz County Clerk.

More information on Measure G