Mead School District’s $14.6M levy fails, now looking for other alternatives

Voters rejected a levy to better keep students and staff safe, along with a few other items the Mead School District was asking for. On the ballot, the school district asked the taxpayers for $14.6 million.

As numbers came in, 58 percent of voters said no and 42 percent were in favor of the levy.

School district staff met today to figure out what to do after the levy failed. Voters had their voices heard, as they ultimately said no, not wanting to pay more taxes.

One of those votes happened to be Cal McKee’s. McKee has lived in Mead for nearly 20 years now, so he knows what’s going on around town.

“We voted against it. I voted against it,” he said.

The school district said the levy would’ve been used to get more security in its schools. This would’ve included a safety director and a few school security officers.

The district also wanted the money to maintain nurses for the care of its students.

However, McKee made up his mind after thinking about it for a while and talking it over with his wife.

“I did that because we looked at what happened a few years ago, the schools had, we thought, plenty of money,” he said.

The school district just passed a $114 million facilities bond in February 2018.

Previously, the school district told 4 News Now it wanted to bring back some teachers who were taken away from budget cuts, too.

“I support the schools, but I think they need better management and planning ahead,” McKee said.

McKee said it was not an easy decision for him.

“We do think they have a great school here and we like to support it, but it seems like they keep coming back for more and more money,” he said. “We don’t have more and more money.”

Resident Kate Marsh has been living in Mead for a few years. Though she doesn’t have any kids in the school district yet, she will one day.

“I voted to pass the levy. I think the more money we can get in our public schools, the better, generally speaking,” she said.

Like the school district, she said she was disappointed when she heard the levy failed.

“I would think the people in the district would want the schools getting more money,” she said.

The school district did not have time for an interview Wednesday, but over the phone said now, they won’t be able to add the things they asked for in the levy and are looking at other options.