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posted: 3/24/2013 5:00 AM

Endorsement: Yes for increase in Itasca Dist. 10

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In the past few years, Itasca Elementary District 10 has received less state funding. The district has absorbed hundreds of thousands of dollars in expenses for busing, reading intervention for first-graders and the like. Despite past cuts, the district now projects a $557,000 deficit for the school year; without cuts or new revenue, the district will have spent its savings by 2018. The district seeks a property tax increase of $1 million annually for its main operating fund at a cost of about $240 annually to the owner of a $300,000 house. The increase would allow District 10 to maintain the status quo and likely to absorb a possible shift in pension funding to local school districts. Without the increase, officials would consider program cuts that begin with middle school extracurriculars and could include music, art and foreign language classes. We would prefer the district deal separately with pension funding as needed, but the loss of state revenue is serious, and severe cuts would be needed to make up the shortfall. We recommend District 10 voters say YES.

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