Viroqua Area School District referendum passes
VIROQUA, Wis. (WKBT) — Voters approved a Viroqua Area School District referendum on Tuesday.
The School District told News 8 there are two outstanding votes in the Town of Coon, but that will not change the outcome of the race.
The District asked to exceed the revenue limit by $350,000 each year over the next five years.
If the referendum is passed, the district estimates in a home valued at $100,000, property taxes will decrease by about $52. If it fails, property taxes will be $118 less on that same property value.Referendum Viroqua School District Can the district exceed the revenue limit by $350,000 a year for five years for operation and maintenance expenses?
PREVIOUS STORY (March 17, 2015):
Voters in Viroqua will see a school district referendum on their ballot in a few weeks.
Viroqua schools are asking to exceed the revenue limit by $350,000 each year over the next five years.
The current referendum for the Viroqua School District is set to expire in June.
The district said it needs the $350,000 just to keep up with day-to-day costs.
The Viroqua School District administration didn’t expect a full house, but it did expect someone to show up for its district referendum informational meeting Tuesday night.
The district’s Director of Business Services Mike Brendel said the lack of people might be a good thing.
“While we have a very supportive community, I think they also do — there is a level of trust with this school district,” Brendel said.
Brendel said the amount of state aid school districts are receiving is decreasing and in order to keep up with maintenance and programs the district needs the referendum money.
“There are two parts to the budget that are affecting schools significantly; the first is the $150 per pupil is that special categorical aid, for the Viroqua School District that’s about a $168,000 decrease in the first year,” Brendel said. “Bigger than that is the $0 per pupil increase in our revenue limit.”
Regardless if the referendum passes, taxes are going to go down it’s just a matter of how much.
If the referendum is passed, the district estimates in a home valued at $100,000, property taxes will decrease by about $52. If it fails, property taxes will be $118 less on that same property value.
“And the reason for this is we have completed paying off the debt on our elementary school,” Brendel said. “Our elementary school is now getting to the age where things like boilers, chillers are being replaced. Having this referendum allows us to tackle these items as we need to without delaying and also not having to fully impact our operational budget.”
Whether or not the referendum passes, the school district said it will still need to make cuts, as it has for the past 10 years.
Brendel said the cost of everyday supplies and transportation, for example, continue to rise and the district will be looking for ways to become more efficient in both what programs it offers and how they are offered.
The referendum will be on the ballot on April 7.