Benzie Central Schools bond proposal fails for second straight time

Nov 5, 2019

Voters denied a bond proposal for Benzie Central Schools today by a vote of 1,674 to 1,573, according to unofficial election results from the district.

A similar bond proposal failed by a slim margin in May, but turnout was higher this time around with nearly 700 more votes cast, according to District Superintendent Matt Olson. He says the district isn't sure if or when they will put another bond proposal to voters.

"We gotta sit down and do some reflection, we know there needs to be a path forward," Olson said. "The specifics of that path? We gotta digest and figure out."

Based on voter feedback from May, the district tweaked several elements for the new bond proposal, like shortening the length of the millage and adding funds for preschool classrooms.

This latest proposal was for a half mill property tax increase to generate $47,850,000 for the district over 26 years. According to the district's promotional materials, the money would have been used for things like a new elementary school building and infrastructure and transportation improvements.

Olson said those needs of the district haven't changed, and he'll consult with stakeholders on what the next steps are in the coming days.