ATLANTA -- Dade County, Fla., voters last Thursday narrowly rejected a massive bond package totaling $569.3 million that would have funded new jails and courtrooms.
In addition, the Miami-area referendum also mined back a plan to raise taxes to fund juvenile delinquency programs.
The larger of two defeated bond propositions had sought approval of $527.3 million of debt to finance 5,000 new prison beds and additional courtroom space. The measure was defeated by a 57% to 43% margin.
A second measure, which sought $42 million to build neighborhood police substations, was rejected 52% to 48%.
In addition, voters turned back -- by a 53%-to-47% margin -- a proposal to dedicate a 0.75-mill property tax increase to the prevention of juvenile crime. The program, which would have raised about $100 million over two years, would have funded an effort to reduce truancy and provide programs for young offenders.
County voters did, however, approve a $59 million bond issue to build 10 new fire stations. Proceeds will also be used to pay for a training center and new headquarters. Debt service on the issue will be covered by a property tax increase.
Ina separate referendum, voters in the city of Miami rejected two public safety bond authorizations: $28 million to renovate a police station and construct storage and training facilities, and $25 million for fire station construction and renovation.