Voters extend mill levies for Hayden, South Routt
Routt County — Voters within the Hayden and South Routt school districts turned out with overwhelming support to extend mill levies in each district Tuesday night.
Hayden’s five-year mill levy extension passed with 72.9 percent of the vote, or 792 votes, in favor. Another 295 people voted against extending the tax. The mill levy was set to expire at the end of this school year and will now extend through the 2019-20 year.
In South Routt, 75.8 percent, or 976 voters, were in favor of extending the levy, while 24.2 percent, or 312 voters, were opposed. South Routt’s levy was set to expire in 2016 and now will extend an additional 10 years, through 2026.
“I’m elated,” Hayden Superintendent Trudy Vader said. “I’m so appreciative that the community sees what I see.”
Vader said she was impressed with the Hayden community’s commitment to education.
“What a vote of confidence; this is a pretty impressive vote,” Vader said.
South Routt Superintendent Darci Mohr said the results mean the district can continue to support programs in art, vocational technology, agriculture and physical education.
“That’s very exciting,” Mohr said after hearing the preliminary results. “I’m thrilled that the taxpayers are going to continue to support this — they’re putting their confidence in us. We’re thrilled with these results.”
Thus far, the Hayden tax has generated about $320,000 each year, based on collecting $24.79 per $100,000 of assessed valuation from residential property owners and $90.31 per $100,000 assessed valuation for commercial property owners.
The South Routt tax has generated about $354,000 annually, costing South Routt taxpayers $68.87 per $100,000 assessed valuation for residential properties owners and $250.91 per $100,000 assessed valuation for commercial property owners.
Since Hayden originally passed the levy in 2010, Vader said test results have improved significantly and staff retention between this school year and last was at 88 percent.
“I’m excited to move forward,” Vader said.
Without the levy, Vader said the district would have had to make cuts in personnel and put off maintenance and upgrades to district facilities.
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