Districts to vote on taxes for school constructionby Tom Weber, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Two school districts just outside the Twin Cities metro area will hold special elections Tuesday, seeking higher taxes to pay for construction projects.
The votes are in Norwood-Young America and in the Montgomery-Lonsdale district.
Both districts learned too late for the November election that they were eligible for low-interest loans through the federal stimulus package.
Montgomery superintendent Corey Lunn said the rare loans will lower the cost of the much-needed projects.
"Right now is a hard time to ask anybody to raise their taxes and take money out of their pocket. But I think the counter to that is to do this any other time after December 31st would cost taxpayers about 33-percent more," Lunn said.
Central superintendent Brian Corlett said his district could save $6 million.
"These things have really been something people have understood we've needed to do. Actually, the timing on this wasn't all that great with the economy the way it is, but when the zero percent interest came out we thought we had to at least try," Corlett said.
The Montgomery-Lonsdale proposal includes nearly $30 million in upgrades and new construction. The Norwood-Young America vote is for $10 million.
Approval would raises taxes on a 175-thousand dollar house by about 100 dollars a year in Norwood and about 200 dollars in Montgomery