OAKLAND - A permanent parcel tax for Oakland's public schools passed by a large margin Tuesday, with more than 78 percent approval.

With all of the precincts reporting, 60,629 votes said "yes" to the $195-per-year tax, which generates $20 million a year for the Oakland school district. Just 16,503 voted against Measure G.

"Pretty impressive, huh?" said Noel Gallo, a school board member and chairman of the Measure G campaign committee. "For me, as a parent and a citizen living in Oakland, it's really a continued sign that people believe in public education, and that they believe in our kids."

Proceeds from the levy pay for smaller class sizes, after-school programs, school libraries, art and music and other programs. The money may not be spent on the salaries of central office administrators, and expenditures will be monitored by an independent oversight committee.

Gallo said he would make sure that "every penny" is spent properly.

Measure G backers said they encountered little opposition during the campaign _ possibly, because it won't cause anyone's tax bills to rise.

If the state budget cuts proposed last month by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger come to fruition, the district would have to trim as much as $13 million from its 2008-09 budget, according to a report presented last week by Oakland Unified CFO Leon Glaster.

E-mail Katy Murphy at kmurphy@oaklandtribune.com or call her at (510) 208-6424. Read her Oakland schools blog at www.ibabuzz.


Advertisement

com/education.