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School board will decide on mill levy vote


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With preliminary budget numbers in, Havre Public Schools trustees will vote Tuesday whether to approve placing a mill levy on the ballot in upcoming May elections. Last year voters approved a levy worth $36,623 in the elementary district and one at $77,603 for the high school district. Because enrollment numbers are up in the elementary schools, enough state funding will come in to allow the schools to continue programing. Without a mill levy, the estimated elementary district budget comes in at $8,220,349. Trustees could elect to place a mill levy worth $21,298 on the ballot for the elementary district, which would put the total at $8,241,648. Clerk Zella Witter said she's not recommending they do, and rather than that they place a mill levy for the high school district before voters instead. A decrease in enrollment of 40 students at the high school has led to a decrease in state funding. The problem has been a trend for the past three years, but voters have approved mill levies to offset the decreases. To keep the budget at its current level, Witter said she is recommending that a mill levy worth $44,352 be placed on the ballot. That would equate to an additional $3.91 for homeowners with a house valued at $100,000 or $7.81 on a home worth $200,000, allowing the budget to be $4,684,518. Trustees also will vote Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at the Havre High School assembly room to call for elections in elementary district 16 during their upcoming meeting. Three seats are up for grabs, including Chairman Shad Huston's and Norm Proctor's. Each of their seats is for a three year term. Trustee Cindy Erickson also will be in the election, but for a one year term. She was appointed in May to Les Odegard's seat with two years remaining. Odegard resigned when his wife was hired as principal at the Highland Park Early Primary School campuses. All three have said they plan to run in the May 5 elections, but only Huston has officially filed. Deadline to file petitions with the school district stating intent to run is Thursday, March 25, by 5 p.m. Applications are avai labl e at the Robins Administration Building.


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