ESPLOST - Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax
What difference can a penny make?
What difference can a penny make? A great deal, if those pennies are collected for upgrading school facilities for children in grades K-12 in Floyd County. As we enter our fifth ESPLOST, we can look back at tremendous progress for our children. Floyd County Schools has completed all major projects promised in ESPLOST I, ESPLOST II, ESPLOST III, and ESPLOST IV referendums and completed them with the funds available from the penny tax. The largest project in ESPLOST IV was the construction of a new Coosa High School. In the upcoming ESPLOST V, a modernization of Armuchee High School and a new Pepperell Middle are the two main projects.
The ESPLOST programs have ignited a revival of school construction that has not been seen in this community since the 1950's. ESPLOST I provided new middle school facilities for Armuchee, Coosa and Model and a new Johnson Elementary School. The biggest project in ESPLOST II was the construction of a new Pepperell High School. The new $26 million Pepperell High was constructed on the site of the old school which was built in the early 1950’s. The new two-story, 185,000 square foot high school was built to handle growth in the community and provide an attractive learning atmosphere for the young people of Pepperell. Floyd County Schools has completed the new Model High School, the marquee project for ESPLOST III. The new Model High is a $28 million project approved as part of Education ESPLOST III passed by local voters in 2008. The new school is a two-story, state of the art facility designed to handle the current student enrollment and provide room for growth in the future. During ESPLOST IV, a brand new three story Coosa High School was built to replace the former facility.
In addition to new school facilities, the ESPLOST program has provided essential additional classroom space and needed face-lifts for many of the education facilities of Floyd County Schools. The timing of these ESPLOST initiatives was perfect because changes in state policy related to smaller class sizes demanded more classrooms in Floyd County Schools. The move to smaller class sizes by the state, while a good idea for children, was a problem for school systems across the state because no funds were provided for the extra classrooms that would be needed. The ESPLOST initiatives helped Floyd County to handle the increased demand for classroom space.
Your pennies in the ESPLOST programs have allowed the school system to bring our classrooms into the 21st century.