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District lays out 3-part plan to address finances, facilities

During a work session on March 25 the school board had a conversation related to a fall 2021 referendum. The district has just one chance - November 2, 2021 - to renew an expiring operating levy or lose about $12 million. Learn more about the levy. In addition to the operating levy, the board has also been considering a possible bond election to address facility needs. During the work session, administration recommended the board consider a three-step approach to address the district’s funding and facility needs, which include:

  1. Adopting a lease levy to fund the immediate expansion of Brookview Elementary.
  2. Holding a levy referendum in November 2021 to renew the expiring levy and increase funding with either an expanded operating levy or a capital projects/technology levy. 
  3. Holding a bond referendum in the spring of 2022 to address the replacement of Lake Elmo and other facility projects yet to be determined. 

While no decisions were made during the work session, the board did ask that the lease levy proposal be brought to the April 8 school board meeting as an action item. If a lease levy is approved, construction could begin on the expansion this summer and the addition could be open for the 2022-2023 school year or earlier.

The board also gave direction to the administration to plan for a spring 2022 bond referendum request, which would allow more time for district leaders to study space and facility needs, consider boundary adjustments, and watch enrollment trends. Additional conversations about the November 2021 operating levy request will take place at future work sessions.

Visit the Referendum website.

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