What's a Bond Referendum?

By: Amy Gleason
By: Amy Gleason

"I wish I had more information," said Tim Richardson.

He isn't alone. Lots of people have questions about the two bond referendums totaling $1-billion.

Nine hundred million could go to state colleges and universities for construction projects. One hundred million could go to state parks for expansions.

"I want to know where JMU is going to spend the money?" said Peter Dering.

The answer: JMU will use the money to build a new center for the arts and music recital hall, a new library and will renovate two building and make them more handicap accessible.

For Pete Poirot, he's not sure where he stands on the state taking on more debt. He's like many critics who believe the state shouldn't borrow more money. But some officials say the bond package will generate more than a billion dollars in economic activity by 2008 and 14,000 new jobs will be created.

Another business owner says he's happy to see more money to go to the colleges, but what about downtown Harrisonburg?

The answer according to officials is that it will create more jobs, bring in more students and more money will filtrate into the city.

Attorney General Jerry Kilgore says even if the voters don't vote for the bond package. The state could take them out anyway, but it will be at a higher interest rate.


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