Second time around: three school levies pass

(UPDATED, 1:09 p.m., with corrected information from Plummer-Worley school district, and news from the Aberdeen School District.)

The second time around was kinder to the Cassia County, Emmett and Plummer-Worley school districts.

All three districts were able to pass property tax levies Tuesday night — after two of them scaled back their original proposals.

But in the Homedale and Plummer-Worley school districts, voters said no to levies for the second time in three months.

Tuesday’s statewide levy tally comes to $21.625 million.

Here’s Tuesday’s school election roundup:

  • Cassia County: Voters renewed the district’s plant facilities levy — agreeing to a 10-year, $13.85 million plan to cover building repairs, safety and security upgrades and technology projects. A $23 million levy election failed in March. (Details on Tuesday’s vote from The Times-News in Twin Falls.)
  • Emmett: Voters passed a two-year, $2.8 million levy. The district has said the money will restore 15 positions, cover a reroofing project and put $436,000 into the operating budget. A $3 million levy had failed in May.
  • Homedale: Voters again rejected a two-year, $968,200 supplemental levy, designed to restore two contract days and seven full-time positions, including three teaching jobs. The levy also would have funded a school resource officer’s position, among other items. But now, more cuts may be on the way. “You get to where the cuts are Draconian — everything is on the table,” Superintendent Rob Sauer told the Idaho Press-Tribune. “Supplemental levies aren’t supplemental anymore, they’re survival.”
  • Plummer-Worley: A two-year, $1.1 million levy passed Tuesday night — and this will allow the North Idaho district to restore a five-day calendar, reestablish all-day kindergarten and reverse budget cuts in athletics. An identical levy failed in May. (More details from the Spokane Spokesman-Review.)
  • Parma: Voters gave an overwhelming 79 percent approval to a 10-year, $2.5 million plant facilities levy to pay for building projects and bus purchases.
  • Aberdeen: A five-year, $1.375 million plant facilities levy passed with 69 percent support.
  • Middleton: The district has a winner, at last, in a messy school board election from this spring. Marc Gunning and Steve Cluff wound up in a deadlock — and then, Canyon County officials learned that some voters were given incorrect ballots and voted in the wrong zones. On Tuesday, Gunning won easily, with close to 70 percent of the vote. (Details from the Idaho Statesman.)

Find the supplemental levy history of any district in Idaho by clicking into our data center.

Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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