San Marino Schools Funding Bill Moves Forward

The measure would allow the San Marino Unified School District to sell the Stoneman School property to the City of San Marino and use proceeds--likely around $1 million--to benefit education programs.

While , the got good news recently about a source of funding.

In a 10-0 vote, the Assembly Education Committee passed a bill Wednesday authored by and sponsored by the SMUSD that would allow the district to sell the Stoneman school property to the and use proceeds to pay for school education programs, according to a prepared statement from Eng’s office.

“AB 1622 would provide clarity and certainty over existing law in allowing the San Marino Unified School District to proceed with sale of the former Stoneman elementary school site to the City of San Marino,” said Eng. “Given California’s continuing fiscal challenges, this is an opportunity to help San Marino School District raise funds locally and maintain its position as a top ranked school district.”

Currently the Stoneman property is used for City recreation programs, preschool and day care but has not been used as an elementary school since 1983. An estimated 12,000 people currently participate in activities that are through or a result of the City’s use of the property, said Eng’s office.

The , but current law prevented the school district from selling the property due to restrictions as to how the proceeds from a sale could be used. Sale of the property could help generate an additional $1 million in payment from the City to the SMUSD.

“Under current law, despite the flexibility provisions … including the authority to use proceeds from the sale of surplus property for any one-time general fund purpose, there have been some districts that have inquired whether ‘one-time’ means just one use or any one-time expenditures,” said Eng’s statement. “San Marino Unified is seeking assurances that when the sale of the property to the City of San Marino occurs, its authority to use the proceeds from the sale for various one-time general expenditures will not be challenged.”

Assembly Bill (AB) 1622 has been in the works at least since the City’s lease of the Stoneman property began and has collaborated on the district’s behalf.

“We are delighted to see AB 1622 clear out of Committee, said Norgaard. “The proceeds from the sale of the Stoneman Property will provide funds to maintain the excellent education programs at San Marino Unified. We express our profound appreciation for the efforts of Assemblymember Eng in moving forward a transaction that will be a milestone for our district, the City and the community.”

The City of San Marino is also in full support of the bill.

“The fact we were able to collaborate on providing financial support to our cherished schools while retaining a community asset which is now home to our Recreation Department has been a winning proposition for our community,” said San Marino Mayor Richard Sun in a statement issued by the City.

The next step for the bill is a hearing scheduled in the Assembly Committee on Appropriations on May 25.

What do you think of the bill that would allow the City to purchase the Stoneman property from the SMUSD? Share your thoughts in the comments. 


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