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410 Central Ave. N.
New Prague, MN 56071

phone: 952-758-1700
fax: 952-758-1799

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Operating Levy Referendum

Questions and Answers

We've compiled a list of common questions about the operating levy referendum and their answers. Click any question below to display the answer. Click again to hide the answer. This list will be updated as more questions are received. If you have a question that is not listed here, you can submit it to nplevy@isd721.org.

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General Election and Finance Questions

What is on the ballot?

There will be one question on the November 7th ballot:

Renew and increase the expiring operating levy by $100 per pupil for six (6) years. If not renewed, the district would lose $654,000 in annual funding for essential services such as classroom staffing, supplies, utilities, transportation, and athletic/activity programing. The current operating levy is not keeping pace with inflation and rising costs. The $100 per pupil increase would provide an additional $445,600 in annual revenue to help retain high quality teachers, maintain technology services, and protect academic, athletic, and activity programs for students.

How is an operating levy different from a bond referendum?

An operating levy asks voters to support additional funds for day-to-day school operating costs. This could include hiring staff, paying utility costs, purchasing learning materials or paying for other operational activities. A bond referendum asks voters to support using bond money for the purpose of building projects. While both require voter support the two different funding sources can only be used for the required intent and are completely separate from one another.

What is the tax impact to a homeowner?

A $200,000 home would see an estimated tax impact of $42 per year. You can calculate the taxes for your property through the “Tax Calculator” on the district website. (link)

How does the NPAS local operating levy compare with other districts?

The current local operating levy at New Prague Area Schools (NPAS) is $425 per pupil lower than the statewide average. NPAS will often use ten (10) school districts, similar in student enrollment, demographics, and socioeconomic status to compare a variety of data points. The local operating levy at NPAS ranks 6th of the 10 comparable districts. Even with the additional $100 per pupil, NPAS would remain 6th on the list.

When was the last time NPAS asked for an operating levy referendum?

In 2011, voters approved an early renewal plus a $100 increase to the existing operating levy. The 5-year tax impact began in 2013 and will expire June 30, 2018.

What will happen if the operating levy referendum fails?

NPAS will lose $654,000 in revenue causing a reduction in classroom staffing, increased class sizes, increased student fees, and reduced programming options.

Questions about the Referendum

When is the election and where do I vote?

The election is set for Tuesday, November 7, 2017. You can find your polling location using the Secretary of State's Pollfinder feature or by visiting the district's voting information page. Learn more about voting at mnvotes.org.

Are there opportunities for the public to hear more information?

Yes, there will be public "Information Nights." Dates and times for these public meetings can be found on the operating levy website. If you have a group that would like information, please contact Janelle Sasse at 952-758-1703 to schedule an informational presentation.

If I can’t attend an Information Night, who do I contact with questions?

You can email the district at levy@isd721.org with a specific question. We will attempt to provide answers to any question received. If you don’t have access to email, feel free to call the District office to speak with Superintendent Dittberner about the referendum.

Where can I get an absentee ballot?

You can either contact Janelle Sasse at the district office (952-758-1703) or visit the district website and look under the “Voting Information” section of the referendum website.

How can I get involved with helping the referendum pass?

The district can only provide information about the referendum and the process that led to it. A separate independent citizen committee has formed to promote the referendum and communicate why they believe it is important for the district.