Idaho Ed News, March 7, 2022, by Terry Ryan
“Idaho had the largest percentage population growth in 2021, followed by Utah, Montana and Arizona” read the December 27th, 2021 headline. It is well known to those of us living here that our state is growing. As a result of this growth in new residents we need more classroom space. Public Impact, a national research firm, reported earlier this year that based on Idaho’s K-8 expected population growth rates for 2020 to 2030 we will need to build 104 new schools. This is a heavy new school construction lift for our school districts and public charter schools. It is also going to ask more of our taxpayers.
To help meet this facility financing challenge the Idaho House of Representative’s recently, and with overwhelming bipartisan support, passed HB 545 on a 68-1-1 vote. HB545 would create a Public Charter School Revolving Loan Fund to “assist qualifying charter schools in obtaining financing for facility purchases, improvements and construction.”