Letter: Levy must pass to get state funds

| February 6, 2020 8:42 AM

We would like to write in support of our vote on the upcoming EP&O Levy (Educational Programs and Operations) for the Othello School District.

The EP&O Levy was once called the M&O (Maintenance and Operations) Levy and is not a new tax, it is a replacement tax. The OSD levy covers things like athletics, security, nurses, early childhood education, some teachers and more.

If the levy passes it would mean about $2 million per year from local property taxes. That would be matched with about $5 million per year from the state. That means about $7 million per year total, only $2 million from local, that would be added to our annual budget that is currently $67 million per year (including current levy funds). If the local levy does not pass we will not receive the $5 million from the state. That would be about 10 percent of our annual funds. Possibly all things funded by levies could be removed if the levy does not pass.

We are current school board members and we as a board voted on the amount of the levy (the lowest local amount to receive the highest amount of state “match”). We also, as a board, support this levy. Anyone should feel free to contact us if they have any questions.

Jenn Stevenson

Lindsy Prows

Mike Garza

Ken Johnson

Othello School Board members