Central HS-District of Westosha board reviews info on possible April referendum

A slide from the presentation given to board members Tuesday on the tax impact of the proposed referendum.

The Central High School District of Westosha Board of Education on Tuesday reviewed info leading up to what could be an April referendum to support a facilities project.

Facility planning — including a community survey — began last year, identifying possible facility additions and renovations.

The current proposal calls for the district to seek approval through a referendum to authorize an in effect separate levy of $39,600,000. The current thinking is to repay the funds for the project over 20 years.

Projects mentioned in preliminary referendum wording reviewed by the board Tuesday included: “safety and security improvements, construction of additions for a cafeteria, gymnasium, locker rooms and classrooms; renovating and facility improvements, including modernizing classrooms and learning spaces, converting the existing cafeteria into an auditorium and the existing locker rooms into a weight room/fitness center; building systems and infrastructure updates; site improvements; and acquisition of furnishing, fixtures and equipment.”

A projection by Baird Financial Services company estimated an annual cost of $136 to property owners of a $200,000 home in the district. The mill rate is expected to increase about 68 cents/$1,000 of assessed value if the referendum is successful. That increase would be in addition to the district’s tax levy toward operations.

The board is expected to consider formally approving the referendum at its January business meeting, with the vote expected to take place April 2021, said John Gendron, district administrator.

If approved, the additional taxes would first appear on property tax bills paid a year from now in 2021.


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