Voters say no again to C-A sinking fund increase

FLINT TWP. — For a while there, as precinct counts trickled in Tuesday night, it looked like voters would approve a half-mill sinking fund increase for Carman- Ainsworth Schools. But with all precincts reporting, the millage request was voted down by 1,542 no votes to 1,465 yes. That’s a slim 51.2 to 48.7 margin compared to 57 percent to 43 percent in the May election when voters first denied the request. Clearly some voters were won over since May but not enough.

A request for the half-mill sinking fund increase was on the May ballot along with two ten-year millage renewal requests for the operating fund and a half-mill sinking fund. Voterspassedtherenewalsbya2to1 margin but narrowly defeated the increase 1,346 no to 1,015 yes.

In July, the school board decided to try again on the November ballot.

Superintendent Steve Tunnicliff expressed his disappointment in a media statement after the vote totals were tallied Tuesday night.

“This is certainly a disappointing result for our district moving forward, especially with such a close election,” he said. “We tried to share the fact that the revenue generated from the existing 0.5 Mill Sinking Fund has decreased by roughly 40 percent since 2006. Keeping up with roof, pavement, and other infrastructure improvements will become difficult with this level of funding. Moreover, building enhancements and additions will be even more difficult.

Nonetheless, Carman-Ainsworth is committed to providing educational opportunities for our students that can lead to well paying jobs in our community and beyond. Therefore, we will continue to explore other funding sources that will allow us to make the vision of a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Lab a reality for our students.”

In pre-election campaigning, district officials said the sinking fund increase would be used for projects including building technology classrooms at the high school and middle school, security upgrades, athletic field improvements and more.

Approving the sinking fund increase would have cost residents an estimated $25 more per year for a home valued at $100,000, $20 for a $80,000 home and $15 for a $60,000 home.

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