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Levies, races placed on May ballot

by CAROLINE LOBSINGER
Staff Writer | April 8, 2023 1:00 AM

Bonner County voters are being asked to decide the fate of a pair of levies and a handful of board races in next month's consolidated election.

The first, a supplemental levy sought by the West Bonner County School District, is for a two-year levy seeking $4.7 million per year. The levy needs a simple majority to pass. The estimated annual cost to taxpayers would be $115.95 per $100,000 of taxable assessed value.

Also on the ballot are a pair of measures sought by the Lakeland Joint School District 272. One is a school plant facilities reserve fund levy seeking up to $1,146,520 per year for two years to maintain and repair existing schools. In the other, the district is rerunning a supplemental levy for $9.5 million per year for two years. The levy, which failed when it was put to voters for the first time in March, would cost an estimated $106 per $100,000 of assessed value. Located primarily in northern Kootenai County, the district includes a small area of Bonner County.

Also on the ballot are seats for the boards of directors for the East Bonner County Library District and Pend Oreille Hospital District.

In the West Bonner County School District election, the district is seeking funds for athletics, extra- and co-curricular activities, a school resource officer, salaries and benefits to retain and recruit both certified and classified staff, textbooks and staff training, safety and facility improvements and bus acquisition.

Of the funds, just over $1.6 million would go to salaries and benefits for classified staff; just over $1.4 million would go toward salaries and benefits for certified staff.

Another $464,413 would go toward the school district's athletics programs and co-curricular and extracurricular activities. Roughly $73,000 would go to fund a school resource officer position.

Roughly $587,000 would go toward textbooks, learning materials and training, while $366,000 would be budgeted to cover safety and security improvements at the district's five schools.

The measure would fund repairs and maintenance at existing schools, buy or improve school sites, purchase school buses, build schools or other buildings, and equip and furnish any buildings, including safety and security measures, heating and sanitation facilities and technology upgrades.

Elsewhere on the ballot is a contest race for a seat on the East Bonner County Library District between incumbent Susan Shea and challenger Stacy Rodriguez. The seat is for a six-year term.

The Pend Oreille Hospital District race has four seats on the ballot and five candidates. Incumbents Bart Casey, Tim Cochran and James Frank are all seeking re-election; the trio are joined by Cynthia Busé and Dwayne Sheffler on the ballot.