01STOCK_SCHOOL

WHITEWATER

The Whitewater School Board on Monday approved adding a referendum to the November ballot, asking voters for permission to exceed revenue limits to preserve programs and class sizes.

If voters approve the referendum, they would not see a tax rate increase on their bills in late 2019. However, each of the following three years would include increases of $30 on a $100,000 home.

In a district projecting declining enrollment over the next several years, the referendum will seek permission to exceed state revenue limits by $2 million in the 2019-20 school year, $2.8 million in 2020-21, $3.6 million in 2021-22 and $4.4 million by 2022-23.

The new operation referendum would replace a 2014 referendum that expires in June 2019, according to a district news release.

The district, according to its website, wants to maintain:

  • Class sizes
  • Student support and mental health services
  • Comprehensive instructional and co-curricular programs
  • Technology, safety and facilities infrastructure

The board wants to keep programs available for students while efficiently using taxpayer dollars, board President Casey Judd said in the news release.

“The solution that will be presented to voters achieves both of these ends,” Judd said.

In the release, Superintendent Mark Elworthy said inflation and increased investments in technology are colliding with a revenue limit that has not increased in eight years.

“Our top priority is to continue our legacy of delivering a top-quality educational experience to each and every student,” Elworthy said.

Whitewater is not alone in adding a referendum to the fall ballot. This week, school boards in Edgerton, Delavan-Darien and Beloit also chose to ask voters for more money.

Public information sessions will be scheduled for September and October in Whitewater.

The election is Nov. 6.

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