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Construction & Operations » Educational Programs & Operations Renewal Levy 2021

Educational Programs & Operations Renewal Levy 2021

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 Recently there has been an effort to communicate information regarding the levy and what is funded. Specifically, there has been concern that levy funds will be used to fund the implementation of Critical Race Theory and Comprehensive Sexual Education.
 
As a district, and in our official capacity, we have a requirement to remain factual and not encourage people how to vote. From a factual perspective, we have a number of resources rooted in facts to assist with communicating to our voters, community, and citizens. The best resource is our school website that has a special focus on levy facts, listed below.
 
To clarify, the district is NOT implementing or funding any Critical Race Theory training, curriculum, or implementation. The district is also NOT purchasing new sexual education materials.
 
 

Maintain Educational Gain

voteOn August 3, 2021, voters will be asked to renew the current Moses Lake School District three-year Educational Programs and Operations (EP&O) levy that was approved by voters in 2018 and due to expire in 2021. The levy renewal maintains our school programs to continue to provide educational and extracurricular services for our learning community. 

 

 

WHAT DOES A LEVY FUND?

 

Levies provide essential services and support for student programs and day-to-day operations that the state only partially funds including athletics, technology, extracurricular programs and support staff. For our district, we renew our levies every three years. This levy is primarily for costs related to supporting essential programs, essential personnel, technology, safety, and our ability to offer elective/specialist classes, field trips, and extracurricular programs such as art, drama, music, and sports. 

 

Bonds allow districts to collect money upfront for major construction projects. The Moses Lake School District is not running a bond for the modernization or building of facilities at this time. 

 

football

 

Athletics & Programs

Enrichment and extracurricular programs, arts, music, clubs 

 

 

 

supplies

 

Equipment & Supplies

Textbooks, technology, curriculum materials, transportation, and operational expenses

 

 

 

staff

 

Support Staff

Nurses, counselors, librarians, substitutes, behavior specialists, resources officers

 

 

 

 

WHAT WILL THE PROPOSED RENEWAL LEVY COST?

 

If approved, the three-year $7-$8.1 million renewal levy will continue the current $1.50 rate per $1000 assessed property value that was previously approved by taxpayers. 

 

The levy amount increases 5-8% each year to account for property value increases, but the rate is projected to state the same at $1.50:

 

COLLECTION YEAR
LEVY RATE PER $1,000 ASSESSED VALUE
LEVY AMOUNT
2021 (current) $1.50 $6,952,565
2022 $1.50 $7,093,914
2023 $1.50 $7,661,427
2024 $1.50 $8,121,113

 

The proposed renewal levy is not a new tax, rather, a renewal/replacement of the current expiring tax.

 

 

WHY DO WE NEED A LEVY? 

 

School districts rely on voter-approved funding measures to cover costs not funded by the state to provide students with a well-rounded education. The renewal levy supports about 5% of the District’s budget and allows us to continue to provide essential services for students. If this levy is approved, voters would not be asked to approve another levy until 2024.

 

 

FAQs

buildA bond provides funding for capital projects such as purchasing property for schools, constructing new schools, or modernizing existing schools. Bonds are sold to investors who are repaid with interest over time from property tax collections, generally between 10-25 years. Bonds require a super-majority to pass (60%). 

learnA levy is a short-term, local property tax passed by the voters of a school district that generates revenue for the district to fund programs and services that the state does not fund or fully fund as part of “basic education.” Levies require a simple majority to pass (50% + 1). A replacement levy is the renewal of an existing levy that is about to expire- or simply the continuation of an existing tax.

The Washington Constitution limits EP&O levies to a period not to exceed 4 years. Moses Lake's levy funds are collected over a three-year time period and must be renewed (similar to a magazine subscription). A Renewal Levy or Replacement Levy asks voters to replace an existing levy that is scheduled to expire.

The District’s proposed 3-year EP&O levy will replace the prior levy approved by the voters in 2018 and set to expire in 2021.

If approved, the three-year $7–$8.1 million levy will continue the $1.50 rate per $1,000 assessed property value that was previously approved by taxpayers. The levy amount increases 3% each year to account for property value increases but the rate is projected to stay the same at $1.50.

See the following table:

COLLECTION YEAR
LEVY RATE PER $1,000 ASSESSED VALUE
LEVY AMOUNT
2021 (current) $1.50 $6,952,565
2022 $1.50 $7,093,914
2023 $1.50 $7,661,427
2024 $1.50 $8,121,113
 
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Simply put, Levies are for LEARNING and Bonds are for building. The levy does not fund the modernization or building of facilities, however, this levy may help fund programs, personnel, technology, or supplies for the new high school. 
 
The new high school is on track for completion Fall 2022. Learn more about the high school here: www.mlsd161.org/apps/pages/academyfaq
Although not all students were on campus this year, our expenditures, utilities, operations, staffing, and programs did not stop– they just looked different than a 'normal' year. Our staff has continued to work around the clock to maintain our buildings, support remote learning, hybrid learning, and on-campus learning models, provide meals and provide other essential support services that students and families depended on.

If the levy fails, our students will not receive the level of education and extracurricular opportunities that are available to them today. The schools will lose a portion of their annual budget and be forced to make cuts across basic programs, including athletics. Historically, our community has been very supportive of our schools and our levies. If the voters do not approve to renew the 3-year educational programs and operations levy the District will need to; 

  • Try to re-run the levy again, November 2, 2021
  • Reduce levy staffing, supplies, and programs 

 

A simple majority is required to pass the levy. 

Voter Registration

Grant County voter registration information

Important Dates for Aug. 3 Primary Election

  • June 19: Military and overseas ballots mailed.
  • July 16: Voting period begins.
  • August 3: Online and mail registrations, and ballots due.
 
Low-income senior citizens and disabled adults may qualify for tax exemptions.
Please call the Grant County Assessor’s Office at (509) 754-2011 for further information.
 
 
 
 
Questions? Email levy@mlsd161.org