LESTER PRAIRIE, MN Voters in the Lester Prairie School District approved both operating levy questions on the ballot by a comfortable margin during Tuesday’s referendum.
The first question passed 252 to 110; and the second passed 210 to 150.
Nearly 70 percent of those who cast ballots voted in favor of the first question. Fifty-eight percent voted “yes” on the second question.
A total of 354 people voted, including six who registered Tuesday.
“We are grateful for those members of the community who came out to vote and showed their support for our school; they are the reason Lester Prairie has such a strong tradition of excellence within our school,” Superintendent Jeremy Schmidt said.
The money from the operating levy will be used for textbooks, computer and technology upgrades, curriculum improvements, staff, building repairs or emergencies, and general operational costs.
The money from the operating levy is not designated for new building construction or additional facilities.
The first question on the ballot was a renewal of the current operating levy in the amount of $493.36.
A “yes” vote on this is a continuation of the current school levy. This levy provides additional state aid in the amount of $171,840.83 annually.
The second question was regarding an additional levy. The additional amount is an increase of $375 per pupil, and will provide an opportunity to max out on state aid. This will provide the school with a match from the state, up to the maximum amount, Schmidt stated.
“The community of Lester Prairie has continued to show support for our school district and a commitment to the students,” Schmidt said in a statement Tuesday night. “We are grateful to Lester Prairie voters for renewing the levy, which provides funding for basic, day-to-day operations in our school. It is this support that makes Lester Prairie a special place to teach our children.”
Statewide, the Minnesota School Board Association (MSBA) reported that school districts compiled a 90.4 percent passage rate Tuesday for operating levies, the highest since MSBA began tracking this information in 1980.