The Hockinson School Board of Directors has approved two requests that will go before the community on the Feb. 12, 2019, ballot. They are a Replacement School Programs & Operations Levy and a new Capital Levy for Technology & School Improvements.
Local levies enable school districts to cover expenses for educational programs and services, and athletic and academic extracurricular offerings that are not funded, or are not fully funded, by the state.
These needs include transportation, special education and extra staffing, including some of our teaching staff and support personnel (such as nursing and security), which the state partly funds.
In 2018, the state increased school funding to districts statewide, but it decreased districts’ ability to collect local levies. So, although in 2016 Hockinson voters approved a local levy that would have provided $5 million for the school district in 2019, HSD is now allowed to collect only $2.4 million in 2019. Why? Hockinson voters had agreed in the 2016 election to pay $3.94 per $1,000 assessed property value in 2019, but new state law limits school districts to collect only $1.50 per $1,000 AV, beginning in 2019.
In 2012, Hockinson voters approved a capital/technology levy to improve instructional technology and complete a few other projects in the district. The district did not request a similar levy in 2016, because the bond that was used to build the Middle School and update the High School enabled some technology upgrades. Some of the district’s other instructional technology now needs a refresher.
If approved, the two three-year levies proposed on the February ballot will cost $1.50 per $1,000 AV for the SP&O levy. The T&SI levy will cost $0.45 per $1,000 AV in 2020, $0.40 per $1,000 AV in 2021 and $0.36 per $1,000 AV in 2022.
More information will be posted on the district website in the coming days and weeks, and a levy information mailer will arrive in district residents' mailboxes in January.
From HSD’s “Education Matters” Winter 2018-19 newsletter.
For more information, please see our 2019 levy information page.