Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz says school districts will have to continue to conduct referendums to seek tax increases until the Indiana Legislature changes the school funding formula. She made the comments during several stops in Lake and Porter Counties. Ritz told educators at the Hammond Area Career Center that “you have to spend money to get money.” She thinks that many voters in areas where school district referendums failed may not have been aware of the issue. The state school superintendent says she encourages the school districts whose referendums did not pass, to try again during the next election. Knox was one such school. Local voters rejected a property tax increase to pay for construction of a new $16 million elementary school wing. The Knox Community School Board has not indicated whether they plan to pursue the issue again during next year’s regular election cycle. In the meantime, Ritz says she will help the schools in any way she can. Ritz addressed members of the Professional Educators Partnership at Valparaiso University.
The school referendum question offered by the Knox Community School Corporation did not pass in Tuesday’s special election.
The final vote found 556 voters against the property tax increase and 458 votes in favor of the construction and rehabilitation project at the Knox Elementary School.
Members of the Starke County Farm Bureau attended the organization’s annual meeting this week and heard Director of State Government Relations, Bob Kraft, talk about legislative successes this year.
Kraft talked about the success in the repeal of the inheritance tax.
“Probably the most noteworthy was the passing of the Inheritance Tax repeal,” said Kraft. “This has been a priority of Farm Bureau for years and years. All of a sudden all of the chips fell where they needed to and the Inheritance Tax will be phased out beginning in 2013.”