Frequently Asked Questions
Here is the ballot language:
Shall the Board of Education of the Sedalia School District No. 200 of Pettis County, Missouri, be authorized to make permanent the current temporary operating tax levy of $0.8628 per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation without an estimated increase in the levy in order to provide funds to complete extensive renovations at Sedalia Middle School, Smith-Cotton Junior High School, and Whittier High School; to reconfigure existing buildings to allow for better distribution of students; to complete other renovations, remodeling and repair improvements to the existing facilities of the District; and to fund maintenance, supplies, staffing and other operating needs of the District?
(If this proposition is approved, the current adjusted operating tax levy of the District of $4.0628 per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation is to continue unchanged and the existing temporary levy of $0.8628 per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation will become permanent after tax year 2026.)
A “Yes” vote is to approve making the current temporary operating tax levy permanent. A “No” vote is against making the levy permanent, but the current levy will continue through 2027.
This is a no-tax rate increase measure. This measure does not add additional money to the current tax rate ceiling. Should Proposition KIDS be approved, the current operating levies would be combined into one operating levy.
The levy generates about $3.5 million per year. The money can be placed in the district’s capital projects fund for construction and/or into the general operating fund. The district’s long-range facilities plan identified needed safety and security upgrades and other repairs needed at all district schools, excluding the Loftus Early Childhood Center. There also is a need to fortify salaries and benefits to attract and retain the best educators and staff members to provide students the best educational opportunities possible.
In 2022, the district engaged in a long-range facilities plan to determine the current and future needs and potential uses of Sedalia 200 buildings. Evaluations by the architectural firm Hollis + Miller identified immediate and longer-term projects that need to be addressed to ensure the buildings’ continued usefulness for Sedalia 200 students and staff members. The district worked with Hollis + Miller to prioritize the projects, with safety and security upgrades getting the greatest urgency.
In determining next steps for the long-range facilities plan, the district included input from the community through a public forum and an online survey to see how it should move forward. The majority of respondents said the district should invest in its current facilities rather than spend money on new buildings. Extending the current operating tax levy will help create capital to complete those needed upgrades; a portion of those funds also can be put toward staff wages and benefits, to help recruit and retain the best employees to ensure a quality education.
Should Proposition KIDS fail in April, the current temporary operating levy will remain until the 2026-2027 school year. Should Proposition KIDS fail, the district would lose an estimated $3.5 million in annual local revenue when this measure sunsets. The district’s ability to provide significant facility upgrades, safety and security measures, maintenance of existing facilities, and general operating costs such as salaries and benefits will be greatly reduced.
The graphic below shows how Sedalia 200 compares with area districts and those in its conference, and where it would be without the operating levy funds.
The initial purpose for the current operating levy was the construction of Smith-Cotton High School on Tiger Pride Boulevard. Since the high school opened, the district has managed the funds and restructured its debt to complete these projects:
- Classroom Additions at Parkview and Skyline elementaries
- Renovation of the Smith-Cotton Junior High Practical Arts Area
- 9th Grade Wing Completion at Smith-Cotton High
- Additional Project Lead the Way (STEM education) area at S-C High
- Auxiliary Gymnasium at S-C High
- Jennie Jaynes Sports Complex
- Loftus Early Childhood Center
- FEMA Building with cafeteria and auxiliary gymnasium at S-C Junior High
- Purchased and remodeled the Maintenance Warehouse
- Upgraded all electrical in Heber Hunt and Washington elementaries
- Geo-thermal installed in Parkview Elementary, Skyline Elementary and Sedalia Middle School
- Annual donations of $646,000 for five years to Sedalia Parks & Recreation Department for competition swimming pool and diving well at the Heckart Community Center.
The election is Tuesday, April 4. The last day to register to vote in the April election is March 8. Absentee voting starts on Feb. 21, no-excuse absentee voting begins on March 21 and the last day to request a ballot by mail is March 22. Saturday absentee voting will be offered 9 am to 1 pm April 1 at the Pettis County Courthouse. For more information, go to pettisclerk.com