School districts begin referendum discussions

School districts begin referendum discussions Photo: KSTP-TV

Updated: June 25, 2019 10:47 AM


Summer is just beginning, but a number of school districts in the metro and state are already preparing for the next school year and beyond.

They want to provide new schools and opportunities for kids.

One of the local districts is Eastern Carver County, where they're looking at a $121 million referendum.

It wasn't too many years ago Nicole Raser was walking the halls of Chaska High School.

"The hallways were pretty busy, people everywhere," she recalls. "It was hard to get through the hallways at times."

The 2016 graduate now works outside in the city and sees the growth in her community.

"There are always people everywhere," Raser said.

More from KSTP: 

Referendums on the ballot in a number of Minnesota school districts

Shawn Hankins has lived in Chaska for 8 years and has two young boys. One just completed his kindergarten year.

"There are homes being built right across the school right now," he said. "They are adding grocery stores and businesses south and southwest of here. It's just expanding in that direction, so the population is not going down, it's growing constantly."

The Eastern Carver County School District will decide Monday night if it will go to voters in November, asking for up to $121 million for an operating levy increase for student learning, a renewal in security and technology money and a bond request to address deferred maintenance and building repair projects, as well as building a larger bus garage and a new elementary school.

"I could see a major benefit to expanding," Hankins said.

The district would not talk with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS, opting to wait and see what the school board decides first.

Several other districts across the state have already approved questions for upcoming elections, or are at least considering it.

The school districts in Barnesville and Paynesville both have referendums on the ballot in a special election on Aug.13.

Voters in Rochester will be asked to approve a $181 million referendum on the Nov. 5 ballot.

The White Bear Lake school board is considering whether to put a $326 million referendum on the November ballot as well. A decision is expected next month.

And the Buffalo Hanover Montrose School District is looking at closing an elementary school, eliminating 22 teacher positions and cutting all middle school activities if a levy doesn't pass this fall.

The school board will decide next month whether to go to voters in November.

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Jessica Miles

Copyright 2019 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company


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