AP NEWS

Mayville voters face $24.5 million referendum

March 29, 2017 GMT

MAYVILLE – Voters in the Mayville School District are being asked to approve a $24.5 million referendum in Tuesday’s election.

The funds will be used for the construction, equipping and furnishing of additions to Mayville High School, including new Agricultural Science and Technical Education classrooms and new physical education facilities; and renovations, infrastructure improvements, safety and security upgrades at all three district schools.

According to school officials, the process of developing the current referendum question began four years ago when the district prepared for a 2015 referendum that ultimately failed.

One of the most common questions is what the tax impact of the referendum will be. School district superintendent Scott Sabol said the amount of the referendum was largely driven by a desire to keep the total school district levy rate steady with rates comparable to historical norms.

The 2015-’16 levy rate was $10.57 per $1,000 of valuation. The rate this year dropped to $8.81 per $1,000 after the district completed debt payments for Mayville Middle School which was constructed as the result of a 1995 referendum. Current estimates of the levy impact show the rate would range from $10.89 to $10.17 over the course of the next five years if the referendum passes.

Sabol also said people are curious about what is different from the 2015 referendum. In that referendum the district focused on the high school and it included plans for a new gym. While a gym is a recognized need, it has been put on a list for more long-term planning. The current plan upgrades safety and infrastructure such as heating and cooling at all district schools. There also is a heavier focus on learning spaces, with a new addition to allow for science, technology, engineering and manufacturing (STEM) courses.

Sabol said the new addition is especially exciting for the opportunities it will provide to collaborate with local industry.

Detailed plans of the various improvements can be viewed at the district website, mayville.k12.wi.us. There also is extensive information about the tax impact of the referendum and a Q&A section.

If the referendum is approved, much of the work will take place in the summers of 2018 and 2019.