Millions of dollars worth of funding will be on the line Tuesday for the Bettendorf and North Scott Community School Districts.
Voters will partake in a special election to decide between funding future projects for the districts or taking away some property taxes, thus eliminating the funding. The Bettendorf Community School District is asking voters to renew its Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (PPEL), a fund that raises roughly $2.3 million for the district each year, while the North Scott Community School District is asking voters to give the OK to issue $25 million in bonds for future projects.
“For our district, this is huge,” said Brietta Collier, the director of financial and business services for the Bettendorf Community School District. “We receive roughly $2.3 million dollars from our PPEL.”
“I think anytime you have a special election you’re always holding your breath until the votes are counted and the results come out,” said Joe Stutting, the North Scott Community School District superintendent.
For North Scott, the $25 million in bonds would fund more than half of their ‘Vision 2025’ project plan, which is estimated to cost $45 million in total. The plan promises additions to two elementary schools in the district, a new softball field and five other projects to be completed by 2025.
Stutting says the Vision 2025 plan is one that excites him, and he’s ready for Tuesday’s vote.
“We’re excited about the vote tomorrow,” Stutting said. “It’s a great vision for our school district. We continue to want to enhance our district, not only educational opportunities, but to help grow all of our communities.”
While the improvements would initially come at the cost of higher property taxes for voters, Stutting predicts taxes will actually go down in the long run with voter approval.
“We would raise the tax rate by 22 cents in the year 2025 and then it would drop to eight cents in ’26,” Stutting said. “Then we predict it to fall below the current tax rate we have.”
As for the Bettendorf Community School District and their PPEL renewal, workers with the district say it won’t raise any taxes if passed.
“It’s been in place since 2003, so it truly is just a renewal of what is already out there,” Collier said.
Getting PPEL approved again would largely help the district fund school buses and technology for students, such as iPads and Chromebooks.
With everything on the line, the school districts encourage everyone to get out and vote.
“Just encouraging people to exercise their right to vote, and please go out and vote,” Stutting said.
Voting for both districts will run from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday. For Bettendorf Community School District voters, election locations include:
- St. John Vianney Catholic Church and Preschool, 4097 18th Street, Bettendorf
- QC Area Realtors, 1900 State Street, Bettendorf
For North Scott Community School District voters, election locations include:
- Scott County Library, 200 N 6th Avenue, Eldridge
- Princeton Community Center, 428 River Drive, Princeton
- Donahue Fire Station, 302 N Main Street, Donahue
For more information, check out the links below.
Bettendorf Community School District:
North Scott Community School District