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De Pere school district to place $23.75 million referendum on April ballot

Posted at 2:22 AM, Jan 09, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-09 03:22:00-05
  • The Unified School District of De Pere board voted 5-1 Monday night to put an operational referendum on the ballot in April
  • If it passes, the referendum would levy $4.75 million per year for five years — or about $1.34 per $1,000 of a taxpayer's property value
  • The referendum covers staff salaries, technology, building maintenance, curriculum, transportation and mental health services
  • Video shows a message from the one dissenting board member and the superintendent

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

The De Pere school board will be asking taxpayers for millions to fund its operations. In a 5-1 vote Monday night, the board decided to put a referendum on the April ballot.

The referendum asks for nearly 24 million dollars over five years.

The tax hit is estimated at $1.34 per $1,000 of property value — so if your home in De Pere is worth $100,000, you'd pay an extra $134 in taxes per year.

The lone holdout on the vote was board member Melissa Niffenegger, who said she wanted more transparency on the ballot.

"I think it's deceptive putting the 4.75 [million] over five years," Niffenegger said. "A lot of people won't do that math in the ballot booth."

Superintendent Chris Thompson says the money would go toward staff salaries, school busses, curriculum and technology.

"This referendum is set to cover all of this, but also to fill the gaps that we're going to have, so we don't have to change anything," Thompson said.

The referendum will be on the ballot on April 2.