Duluth voters split on Referendum questions

Published: Nov. 8, 2023 at 7:10 PM CST
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DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) - Voters approved one of two ballot questions for the Duluth school referendum on Election Day.

With 55 percent of the votes, Duluthians authorized the school district to refinance existing debt to free up $2.6 million to support academic and mental health support positions and expand class options for high school students.

Duluth Public Schools Superintendent John Magas says with the new approval students will be given more support.

“We’ll be able to focus on the academic and behavioral supports as well as the new high school schedule,” says Magas.

The second question, which failed, would have authorized a capital projects levy to provide $5.3 million annually. That money would have paid for devices, learning technology, cybersecurity improvements, and would have hired technology staff.

If you own a $200,000 home, property taxes will increase by $1.00 a month to pay off the debt and will go into effect next year.

The refinancing will allow the debt to be paid off sooner than expected and create financial stability for the district.

Magas says because voters did not approve question two concerning technology, many students will not be able to get their devices replaced as often as the district would like.

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