Beloit superintendent predicts tough conversations after referendum fails

MADISON, Wis. — Voters in the Beloit school district rejected a school referendum Tuesday, joining at least eight other districts in southern Wisconsin which did the same.

The proposed referendum, which would have increased school funds by $9 million per year over three years, was rejected 60–40%. Of the 16 referenda races called as of Wednesday evening, half of the referenda votes ultimately failed.

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“We were hoping for the referendum, of course, to be successful yesterday.” Beloit Superintendent Willie Garrison II told News 3 Now. “We still have those needs that we have for our students. And that’s something that we will have to address here in the next few months.”

Beloit held a non-recurring operating referendum — meaning the funds would go to support the district generally, and would sunset after the three year timeframe. Other area districts also opted for capital, or issue debt, referenda which support improving buildings.

“We were looking for $9 million for the next three years here in the school district to help us support our classrooms, maintain our facilities, maintain a fair and equal raise for our staff, and of course maintain our course offerings,” Garrison said. “Without those monies naturally, we have the needs that are still there.”

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