Clark County School District officials are laying the ground for the next bond authorization they say they need to continue their massive construction program.

County officials Monday made a formal request for volunteers to serve on ballot question committees, which will draft arguments for and against the measure on the November ballot, which will ask for authorization to issue general obligation bonds for schools through 2018.

The new measure would replace the previous authorization, approved by voters in 1998.

The district yesterday sold the last new-money bonds expected from that authorization, which expires June 30. Merrill Lynch & Co. won the bidding for the $675 million competitive deal at a true interest cost of 4.196%. The bonds carry double-A level ratings across the board from the three major rating agencies.

NSB Public Finance is financial adviser. Swendseid & Stern is bond counsel.

November’s ballot measure will ask voters to support the new bond issues by continuing the same property tax rate that was approved by voters 10 years ago. That would generate capacity for between $9.5 billion and $11 billion of GOs over the new 10-year authorization period, according to the school district.

The Clark County district enrolls more than 70% of Nevada’s schoolchildren, and its enrollment of more than 308,000 is up from 203,000 1 years ago. School officials predict that enrollment will reach 343,000 by 2013.

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