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Badger High School board approves referendum questions for upcoming election
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Badger High School board approves referendum questions for upcoming election

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Badger kids at manufacturer

Badger High School students visiting manufacturing company Scot Forge in Clinton on a field trip to recognize Manufacturing Month in the school’s Metals Machining, Production and Careers class are, from left, Kaleb Heim, Chris Stefan, David Schiltz, Julian Koester, Trent Junion, Bradley Kinsch, Hayden Poltermann, Frank Gentile, Cole Heniff, Zach Cowan, Trevor Statdfield and Christain Torres. (Contributed photo/Regional News)

Officials from the Lake Geneva-Genoa City Union High School District have approved the wording for two referendum questions that will be placed on the ballot during the April 6 spring election.

The Lake Geneva-Genoa City Union High School Board approved, Dec. 14, to place a $6 million referendum question and a $750,000 referendum question on the ballot during the upcoming election.

Funding from the $6 million referendum, if approved, would be used to help pay for various projects at Badger High School including roof replacement, technology upgrades, renovating the kitchen area, replacing the main gymnasium's bleachers and floors, renovating the school's auditorium and upgrading the 1958 portion of the building.

The funding also would be used to renovate the school's cafeteria, lobby area and restrooms.

The school board members unanimously approved, Jan. 11, the wording for the $6 million referendum which reads:

"Shall the Lake Geneva-Genoa City Union High School District, Walworth County, Wisconsin be authorized to issue pursuant to Chapter 67 of the Wisconsin statutes, general obligation bonds in an amount not to exceed $6,000,000 for the public purpose of paying the cost of renovations, capital maintenance and updates at the school facilities and site, including safety improvements and technology infrastructure upgrades, and acquisition of furnishings, fixtures and equipment."

The school board members also unanimously approved to sell up to $6 million in general obligation bonds if the referendum is approved.

The additional referendum would allow the school district to exceed its revenue limit by $750,000 a year during the 2021-2022 school year and following school years.

The extra $750,000 would be used to help pay for technology upgrades, educational programs and safety upgrades at the high school.

Members of the school board unanimously approved the wording of the $750,000 referendum question, as well, which reads:

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"Shall the Lake Geneva-Genoa Union High School District, Walworth County, Wisconsin be authorized to exceed the revenue limit specified in Section 121.91, Wisconsin Statues, by $750,000 beginning with the 2021-2022 school year, for recurring purposes consisting of ongoing operational expenses, technology and safety upgrades to maintain current educational programming?"

The school board members also approved to sell up to $750,000 in general obligation bonds if the referendum is approved.

George Chironis, business administrator for Lake Geneva schools, said residents in the high school district would not experience an increase in their tax rate if the referendums are approved.

"It will keep the tax rate nice and flat," he said.

Chironis also said now is a good time for the school district to try to approve the referendums since bond rates are currently low. 

"It's a good opportunity for us to go out for referendum," Chironis said.

Superintendent James Gottinger said the district is looking to form a committee to help promote the referendums. 

Gottinger said district officials can educate people about the purpose of a referendum, but they cannot promote a referendum or encourage people to vote in favor of a referendum.

"A 'yes' committee can promote a positive vote, whereas we cannot," Gottinger said. "We can only promote information, in which we're not giving information to sway people to vote for a referendum."

Gottinger said he hopes to have some committee members established within the next few weeks.

"This isn't the time to go gangbusters, but April will be here relatively soon," Gottinger said.

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