Across 47 school districts, a $485 million election day approaches

From Boundary County to Fremont County, voters will decide the fate of more than $485 million in school ballot measures on March 12.

Bond issues and levies will be on the ballot in 47 of the state’s 115 school districts.

Here’s the statewide rundown. (And if you’re looking for more detail, click on your local school district’s name):

Vallivue: $65.3 million bond issue. Middle school is at the crux of this proposal. With two middle schools over or close to capacity, this growing Canyon County district says it needs to build a third middle school. Meanwhile, 48-year-old Vallivue Middle School would undergo $10 million in renovations.

Bond issues require a two-thirds supermajority to pass.

Cassia County: $56.3 million bond issue. District officials would use the bond revenues to add 14 classrooms at Burley High School and six classrooms at Burley Junior High School and upgrade the district’s technical center, among other projects. (Click here for additional coverage.)

Bear Lake County: $48.9 million bond issue. The big-ticket item is a plan to replace 81-year-old Bear Lake Middle School. The district also wants to add an auditorium and upgrade classrooms at Bear Lake High School and replace a 92-year-old section of Georgetown Elementary School. Bear Lake says the aging school “presents numerous seismic issues.”

Coeur d’Alene: Two-year, $40 million supplemental levy. Coeur d’Alene would use this levy to bolster teacher pay, keep school resource officers and nurses on the job, and replace aging buses and outdated learning materials. The district draws about 22 percent of its budget from the levy. A $16 million-a-year levy expires this year.

Supplemental levies require a simple majority to pass.

Payette: $30.9 million bond issue. Payette hopes to rebuild and remodel its high school, with a gym, auditorium and career-technical class space incorporated in the plan. The existing high school was built in 1962, as a junior high school. Payette’s 71-year-old Westside Elementary School would also get a remodel.

Post Falls: $19 million bond issue; two-year, $9.9 million supplemental levy. The bulk of the bond issue would go toward a new elementary school. Post Falls hopes a new school would alleviate crowding and allow kindergartners to remain in neighborhood schools. An identical supplemental levy passed in 2017. (Click here for previous coverage.)

Salmon: $25.6 million bond issue. The district hopes to build a new elementary and middle school to house 650 students in separate wings. (Click here for previous coverage.)

Lake Pend Oreille: Two-year, $25.4 million supplemental levy. The North Idaho district says the levy constitutes about 30 percent of its budget — and, in turn, covers salaries for about a third of the district’s staff. Lake Pend Oreille has instituted all-day kindergarten and hired school resource officers with levy proceeds. An increase from this year’s $8.7 million levy.

Minidoka County: $21 million bond issue. Items on Minidoka County’s to-do list include front entrance security at several district buildings and adding classrooms at Paul and Heyburn elementary schools, West Minico Middle School and Mt. Harrison High School.

Pocatello-Chubbuck: Two-year, $18.5 million supplemental levy. Pocatello-Chubbuck has collected an identical levy since 2015, with the money going to everything from personnel and employee insurance to utilities and supplies. The levy comprises 12 percent of the district’s budget.

Lakeland: Two-year, $17.98 million supplemental levy. If this two-year-old levy is renewed, Lakeland says it will hire two additional armed guards, add safety beacons at the schools and maintain ongoing programs, such as all-day kindergarten and extracurriculars. The levy accounts for about 27 percent of the district’s budget.

Oneida: $14.85 million bond issue. Oneida’s existing elementary school is nearly 70 years old. The bond issue would cover the costs of demolishing the old school and putting up a replacement.

Idaho Falls: Two-year, $13.8 million supplemental levy. The renewed levy would be used to hire and retain teachers, Superintendent George Boland said. An identical levy has been on the books since 2003.

Twin Falls: Two-year, $10 million supplemental levy. The district would use proceeds for textbooks and curriculum materials and security staffing, among other items. A $4.25 million-a-year levy is expiring. Twin Falls gets about 10 percent of its budget from the supplemental levy. (Click here for previous coverage.)

Filer: $9.9 million bond issue. The district would use bond proceeds to renovate and expand its career-technical building, add middle school classrooms and revamp the elementary school’s parking area.

St. Maries: Two-year, $4.15 million supplemental levy; four-year, $2 million plant facilities levy. St. Maries has collected an identical supplemental levy since 2015. The new plant facilities levy would go toward maintenance and building projects, such as roofing, bleachers and security upgrades.

West Bonner County: Two-year, $6 million supplemental levy. The bulk of the money would cover a projected general fund shortfall. Another big-ticket item: maintaining extracurricular programs. This levy has been in place since 2013, accounting for about a quarter of the district’s budget.

American Falls: Two-year, $5.5 million supplemental levy. The district plans to use the levy to launch a dual immersion program and all-day kindergarten, eliminate student fees and provide school supplies to students free of change. This would replace a $2.5 million-a-year levy.

Kuna: Two-year, $5 million supplemental levy. Kuna says it will use the renewed levy to cover 20 teaching positions, continue all-day kindergarten, retain school resource officers and purchase learning materials ranging from Chromebooks to musical instruments. Voters passed an identical levy in 2017.

Boundary County: Two-year, $4.8 million supplemental levy. The levy accounts for 14 percent of Boundary County’s budget, going toward salaries and benefits, training and safety and security projects, among other items. An identical levy has been on the books for the past four years.

Blackfoot: Two-year, $4.55 million supplemental levy. A slight increase from a $2.15 million-a-year levy approved in 2017.

Fremont County: Two-year, $3 million supplemental levy. The district has collected an identical levy since 2013.

Murtaugh: A $2 million bond issue for new athletic facilities.

Potlatch: One-year, $1.75 million supplemental levy. A renewal of a levy passed a year ago.

Jerome: Two-year, $1.6 million supplemental levy. An increase from the $650,000-a-year levy approved two years ago.

Snake River: Two-year, $1.5 million supplemental levy. Voters approved an identical levy in 2017.

Aberdeen: Five-year, $1.375 million plant facilities levy. Topping Aberdeen’s list of needs: covering maintenance staff salaries and replacing an intercom and bell system in the elementary school. Another levy renewal.

Cascade: Two-year, $1.3 million supplemental levy. This proposal would replace an existing $500,000-a-year levy.

Gooding: Two-year, $1.3 million supplemental levy. Voters approved an identical levy in 2017.

Plummer-Worley: Two-year, $1.28 million supplemental levy. Plummer-Worley has collected a $550,000-a-year levy since 2013.

Wilder: Five-year, $1 million levy. Wilder is taking another run at renewing a levy for the Canyon Owyhee School Service Agency, a cooperative that provides special education and career-technical education for five rural school districts. A similar proposal failed in August.

Troy: One-year, $995,000 supplemental levy. An identical levy has been in place since 2014.

Genesee: One-year, $935,000 supplemental levy. A levy renewal.

Bruneau-Grand View: Two-year, $800,000 supplemental levy. A reduction from the current $500,000-a-year levy.

Challis: Two-year, $800,000 supplemental levy. An identical levy has been on the books since 2013.

Garden Valley: Two-year, $800,000 supplemental levy. An increase from the existing $350,000-a-year levy.

Soda Springs: One-year, $728,000 supplemental levy. Voters approved an identical levy in 2018.

New Plymouth: Two-year, $700,000 supplemental levy. New Plymouth did not collect a supplemental levy this year.

Camas County: Two-year, $600,000 supplemental levies. Two questions will appear on the ballot: one for a $500,000 levy, and a second for $100,000 for music programs. Camas County has collected a $300,000-a-year levy since 2016.

Horseshoe Bend: Two-year, $600,000 supplemental levy. If voters extend a levy that has been in place since 2013, Horseshoe Bend says it will spend the money on staffing, safety and security improvements and other initiatives.

Hansen: Two-year, $580,000 supplemental levy. An identical levy has been in place since 2015.

Ririe: Two-year. $580,000 supplemental levy. Ririe says it would use the money to maintain existing programs, boost classified salaries and build up its financial reserve. Voters approved a smaller, $220,000-a-year levy in 2017.

Butte County: Two-year, $320,000 supplemental levy; two-year, $203,000 plant facilities levy. The supplemental levy has been in place since 2011. Butte County collected a $65,000 plant facilities levy this year.

Clark County: Two-year, $500,000 supplemental levy. This levy has been in place since 2015.

Kamiah: One-year, $500,000 supplemental levy. If voters renew a levy approved a year ago, money would go into base operations and a variety of capital projects, including camera surveillance in the elementary and middle schools, and an electronic door-locking system.

Highland: One-year, $499,000 supplemental levy. An identical levy has been on the books since 2013.

West Side: Five-year, $200,000 plant facilities levy; one-year, $90,000 supplemental levy. Both proposals are levy renewals.

Republish this article on your website