Indiana

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Nine Indiana School Districts Will Pursue Referenda In May Election

Indiana schools have to seek voter approval for large construction projects and levy increases outside the property tax cap.

Elle Moxley / StateImpact Indiana

Indiana schools have to seek voter approval for large construction projects and levy increases outside the property tax cap.

What are the odds your school corporation’s referendum will pass? It’s a coin toss — since 2008, half of the 92 districts who’ve tried to convince voters to raise their own property taxes have been successful.

Nine Indiana school districts will ask for 10 tax levy increases on the May ballot. Elkhart Community Schools is asking voters to approve two questions. And two school corporations — the Metropolitan School District of Boone Township and Mount Vernon Community Schools — are returning to the polls for the second and third time, respectively.

We’ve compiled a list of referenda after the jump. Or, check out our referenda scorecard to see how voters in other districts have weighed in on similar questions since 2008.

Construction referenda

General fund referenda

  • Concord Community Schools will ask for 40.5 cents per $100 of assessed valuation to help offset a $10 million loss to property tax caps. The corporation is the 8th hardest hit in the state, according to Goshen News. The referendum would raise roughly $28 million over the next seven years to help pay for building repairs and transportation.
  • Elkhart Community Schools will ask for 13.15 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The general fund referendum will help fund transportation. The district doesn’t currently provide bus transportation for 6-12 students who live within two miles of their school.
  • Eminence Community School Corporation will ask for 40 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The corporation currently has a lower tax rate than neighboring Cloverdale or Monroe-Gregg schools. District officials say they would have to consider consolidation if the referendum doesn’t pass.
  • Lanesville Community School Corporation will ask for 17 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The district is facing a revenue shortfall and can’t continue using its rainy day fund to offset health care costs, according to the Corydon Democrat.
  • MSD Boone Township will ask for 21 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. A similar, 23-cent referendum failed last May by just four votes.
  • MSD of Decatur Township will ask for 29.86 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The referendum would raise $27 million for the school corporation. According to the Indy Star, the district will likely suspend busing in 2017 if it doesn’t pass.
  • Mt. Vernon Community School Corporation will ask for 11 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The school district tried unsuccessfully in 2010 and again in 2012 to pass a general fund referendum.
  • White River Valley School Corporation will ask for 41 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The district is facing a revenue shortfall and could face consolidation with a neighboring district if the referendum fails.

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