BMCC passes bond
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 20, 2015
Contact: Casey White-Zollman, Vice President Public Relations
BMCC bond passes
PENDLETON, Ore. –Blue Mountain Community College’s bond measure 30-106 passed in both Umatilla and Morrow counties Tuesday (May 19), thrilling the College community and bond supporters who have worked for a year and a half to make the bond a success. The $23 million bond will cost taxpayers approximately 25 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value for 15 years.
In Umatilla County, the bond passed with 52.96% of the vote, and in Morrow County with 52.25%. These results remain unofficial.
“It’s so nice to live in a community that really values education,” said BMCC President Cam Preus. “I want to thank all of our supporters, including our employee associations, Board of Education, students, the Friends of BMCC, business partners, and countless community members who came out to support our efforts. Without you, we would not be celebrating right now.”
The real winners, Preus said, are the students.
“They’ll have up-to-date facilities, quality instruction and new opportunities for learning, which equals prosperity for our community,” Preus said, noting that 82 percent of BMCC students stay to work in the region after leaving the College.
The passage of the bond means BMCC can move forward with a plan to renovate its Agriculture Center, construct a Precision Irrigated Agriculture Center on OSU Experiment Station property in Hermiston, construct a Workforce Training & Early Childhood Education Training center on Port of Morrow property behind the SAGE Center in Boardman, and conduct improvements to buildings across campus to improve efficiencies, safety and provide cost savings on utilities.
BMCC attempted to pass a bond in November 2013, but failed to garner enough votes in both Umatilla and Morrow counties. Following that attempt, BMCC took a step back to reevaluate and spent three months listening to the public about what it did and did not support in its community college. A Citizen’s Review Panel spent four months identifying and reprioritizing projects, eventually coming up with a recommendation for the Board’s consideration. In October 2014, the Board approved moving forward with that recommendation, and in March 2015 approved placing the bond on the May ballot.