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May 26, 2019

3/18/2019 8:48:00 AM
An important decision

Dear Editor:
I am writing this as a taxpayer and not representing the school board. As a community we have the opportunity to make a legacy decision. With that being said, we also need to balance the decisions we make with the financial impact it will have on our community, using real life examples.
The average price of a home in Iowa County, according to the Wisconsin Real Estate Association is $170K. With the currently passed referendum for the elementary school remodel, the added DAILY tax increase equates to $1.17/day, based on an average home value of $170K.
Compare this with the tax increase for building a new school, based on a 19.5 million-dollar valuation, and the added DAILY tax increase to build a new Elementary School based on an average home price of $170K is $1.60/day.
This amounts to a difference of 43 cents/day between remodeling the current facility versus building a new school.
It is important to recognize that experts have estimated that one fifth of the currently passed referendum dollars will need to be spent on repairing problems that already exist. This percentage will likely increase as other problems are uncovered along the way.
Many in the community have expressed fear that the final expense will exceed the 19.5 million-dollar valuation. State statute ensures this cannot occur. The 19.5 million-dollar valuation includes built in contingency costs, leaving the potential for the final cost to actually be significantly less. One area where the contingency dollars are greatly overestimated is concerning adding all new furnishings and equipment for a new facility. A significant cost savings will occur simply by moving the current furnishings and equipment to the new school.
A new facility brings a single campus, more parking, more safety and combined services. I believe it is time to move forward and continue our excellence in education. I know everyone voting wants what they believe is best for our community and children. We have an opportunity to make a significant impact on future generations of Mineral Point students which will ultimately improve our community as a whole. Thank you for considering all the facts when deciding how you will vote!

E.R. Lindsey
Mineral Point

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