Oshkosh, Omro schools to hold referendum informational sessions
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When voters from Oshkosh and Omro school districts cast their Nov. 3 ballots, they’ll also decide whether to let officials increase property taxes beyond their levy limits.
To educate voters, both districts are holding informational sessions to address any concerns about the referendum questions on the ballot.
Oshkosh is holding sessions at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Carl Traeger Elementary School and Thursday at Webster Stanley Middle School and a virtual session on Oct. 6 via Zoom. Omro’s session will be 6 p.m. Oct. 20 at Omro High School Performing Arts Center.
Attendees in both Omro and Oshkosh will be required to social distance and wear masks.
Oshkosh referendum seeks to build two new schools
Oshkosh Area School District voters will decide whether to approve two referendum questions, worth a combined $115 million, on the Nov. 3 ballot.
The referendum questions ask voters to renew $7.95 million in operating funds approved in 2014 and 2016, and an additional $107 million for facilities improvement and new buildings.
If the capital referendum passes, two new schools would be built by 2024: a new elementary school for those who attend Webster Stanley and Washington and a new middle school for those who go to Merrill and Webster Stanley.
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David Gundlach (Photo: David Gundlach)
Some critics have asked why the district is moving forward with the referendum when students aren’t attending in-person classes.
“We’re educating kids remotely. That’s not going to be a forever thing. When this is all said and done, we’ll need our schools like never before,” Deputy Superintendent David Gundlach said in response.
The capital referendum would raise property taxes by $85 a year on a home worth $100,000 in equalized value, or $7.08 a month, Gundlach said. Property taxes would not increase for the first referendum question.
Omro referendum totals $12.8 million
Voters in the School District of Omro will decide on two referendum questions totaling $12.8 million on the Nov. 3 ballot.
The first referendum question asks voters for $850,000 a year for four years for technology and learning programs. The district is also asking voters for $9.4 million for facilities repairs, including a roof replacement, HVAC upgrades and other repairs.
RELATED: Omro voters will decide on 2 school referendum questions, totaling $12.8 million, in November
Omro held an informational session for the public Sept. 15 and didn’t receive a large turnout, Superintendent Jay Jones said. To inform the public, the district also set up a table with information at the Thursday Night Market.
The district mailed residents a survey about the referendum in May and June to which 804 people, or 24%, responded, Jones said. Of those 804, 60% favored the referendum.
“We’re going to seek opportunities to engage the community. It’s challenging when you have COVID-19,” Jones said.
The referendum would increase property tax by $51 on a home worth $100,000 of equalized value, Jones said.
Voters can also visit the each district’s website for Omro and Oshkosh for more information about referendum questions, or to contact their school district.
Contact Alex Groth at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter at @grothalexandria
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