TRUCKEE, Calif. - The people have spoken, and those living within the Truckee-Donner Recreation and Park District have said "no" to Measure J.Fifty-four percent of the 3,867 district voters voted in favor of the bond measure, according to unofficial election results from Placer and Nevada counties. The measure required two-thirds majority to be approved.Measure J was a proposed bond measure for $8.52 million over 30 years to finance the construction of a performing arts center and an aquatic center in Truckee. It was estimated that those living in the Truckee-Donner Recreation and Park District would pay $6.91 per $100,000 of assessed property value - amounting to an annual average tax of about $20 per parcel owner. Lynne Larson, chair of the group created to oppose to the bond measure, Truckee Citizens for Responsible Government, said she is happy with the results."I'm pleased that voters were willing to say 'no,'" she said Wednesday morning. "The timing of this new tax was wrong and the voters decided they didn't want another tax."Larson's main argument against the tax was people in the district are already struggling financially in this downturn economy and thus isn't the right time for government to ask for more money.Those in favor of Measure J argued this is a good time to issue the bonds, since interest rates and construction costs are low, allowing the community to purchase both facilities on sale - coupled with a projected annual economic boost to Truckee of $2 million."We're a little disappointed (with the results), but encouraged by the fact that a majority of voters were willing to invest in these two projects," said Dan Kates, co-chair of Truckee First, the group in favor of approving Measure J, Wednesday morning. "We take this as validation that these projects are valued by the community, and we'll continue to work to bring them to a reality."As for what that work might entail, Kates said it's too early to know at this time.Steve Randall, general manager of the Truckee-Donner Recreation & Park District, said Wednesday afternoon it'll be up to the district's board of directors to decide what happens next.He said the board could have a "preliminary discussion" on the topic at Thursday's regularly scheduled monthly board meeting at 6 p.m. in the Truckee Community Recreation Center, located at 8924 Donner Pass Road. According to the meeting's agenda, the bond measure is a listed item under unfinished business.TDRPD has $7 million in funds left over from the construction cost of the Truckee Community Recreation Center back in 2009, and, according to previous reports, after the board of directors nixed the idea of an ice rink, they eventually decided on letting the public vote on construction of a performing arts and an aquatic center.As for how that money will be used now, Randall said that it is up to the board to decide.
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