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State Bonds: What are they?
How do they work?
by Valerie Orleans


From Dateline (February 19, 2004)

John Erickson
John Erickson, chair and professor of finance, displays the sample ballot that voters will use in the upcoming March 2 election. Among the choices voters will face are several different bond initiatives, including Proposition 55, the Kindergarten-University Education Facilities Bond
Act of 2004.

When California voters go to vote March 2, they will be faced with many different bond measures, including Proposition 55, the 2004 school bond measure. John Erickson, chair and professor of finance, answers some of the most commonly asked questions about state bonds.

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Q&A with Erickson

• John Erickson

• What are bonds and what are they used for?

• Why do states use bonds?

• Have bonds been used to support educational goals before?

• Why not just add additional taxes?

What are the types of programs that might be considered for bonds?

• So, with interest, what do bonds cost?

• You hear about general obligation bonds and revenue bonds. What's the difference?

• Are there alternatives to using bonds?

• Why are there so many propositions on the March ballot?

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