School levy increase approved in St. Paul

A $39 million levy proposal was approved for schools in St. Paul over the next eight years with more than 60 percent of the vote. The measure includes the renewal of a previous $30 million levy and and additional $9 million for technology upgrades.
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A $39 million levy proposal was approved for schools in St. Paul with more than 60 percent of the vote, the Star Tribune reports.

The measure includes the renewal of a previous $30 million levy and an additional $9 million for technology upgrades.

The Pioneer Press says the referendum would trigger a $63 a year tax increase for the owner of a $149,000 home, the median value in the district.

Superintendent Valeria Silva says a steering committee will develop a framework for how the money will be spent over the next eight years.

Only 40 school districts had levy referendums on the ballot this election year compared to 130 districts last year, MPR reports. Half of the districts asked to renew old levies while the other half asked voters for an increase.

Twenty-nine of 40 levies passed around the state, MPR reports.

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St. Paul schools chief seeks levy increase

St. Paul schools Superintendent Valeria Silva wants to ask voters for extra money in November. She proposes renewing an existing schools levy -- and raising it. A current levy has brought in about $30 million a year since 2006. The proposed raise would amount to an extra $65 a year on a $149,000 home, the median value in the district this year.

Republican lawmaker seeks to limit school levy votes to election years

House Education Finance Committee chair Pat Garofalo says he will push a bill next session to require levy referendums to come only in general elections when more voters go to the polls. Garofalo says during off-year elections, more than 70 percent of referendums pass. That rate falls to 52 percent in election years.