An operating millage renewal proposal on the Nov. 6 ballot would affect Brandywine Community Schools, including fourth grade students Shelby Lee, Tristan Gordon and Caleb Byrd. Leader photo/CRAIG HAUPERT

Archived Story

Brandywine to cut budget if ballot proposal fails

Published 2:19pm Thursday, October 25, 2012

Brandywine Community Schools Supt. John Jarpe will be crossing his fingers on Nov. 6 as voters decide the fate of a ballot proposal that, if passed, would secure a large portion of revenue for the district for the next five years.

The operating millage renewal proposal would allow the district to continue to levy the statutory rate of 18 mills for on non-homestead property, which includes businesses, rental property and second homes. It does not affect a person’s principal residence.

The millage, which provides about $1.37 million to the district’s operating fund, has been in place for nearly 20 years. Voters renewed the millage four years ago by a slim margin.

“It was tighter than I wanted it to be,” Jarpe said, “and that is why I am a little concerned this time around.”

The amount of revenue generated by the millage accounts for about 11 percent of the district’s operating budget.

If it doesn’t pass, Jarpe said the district would have to plan for a reduced budget.

“Those are unpleasant kinds of things that involve not buying instructional materials, personnel layoffs, larger class sizes — we’d have to make cuts,” he said.

If the proposal is voted down, Jarpe said the district would likely bring the millage renewal before voters again in a special election sometime next year.

“We’d certainly rather not have to do that,” Jarpe said.

The millage expires in June 2013 and was last voted on in May 2009.

Registered voters living in the Brandywine Community Schools district can vote on the proposal.

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