Weather Forecast


Hastings voters will be asked to renew levy from 2005

When Hastings voters go to the polls Nov. 5, they will be voting for School Board candidates and, secondly, whether or not to approve the renewal of a levy they supported in 2005.

In 2005, voters approved an operating levy of about $3 million per year for eight years. Those levy funds have been designated for the district’s general fund and are used for programs, services and staffing. By contract, a bond referendum is for buildings.

The 2005 levy expires at the end of this year.

The School District is now asking for renewal of that levy, at that same level, to continue its programs. There probably would be no increases on a taxpayer’s school share of property taxes, unless there has been remodeling or additions to the property. In fact, because the Minnesota Legislature in 2013 session approved additional school tax reliefs, there may be a decrease in taxes (at least when it comes to the school’s portion of property taxes).

In a “Viewpoint” article on Page 7A of this week’s issue, Superintendent Tim Collins explains why the levy vote is being held.

“We will need to renew that levy this November,” Collins writes. “In 2011 our community renewed the 2003 levy because our residents understood that we were not asking for more money. We were going to operate our schools on the same levy that was approved in 2003. I am hoping that we can get the same message out to our residents two years later in 2013.”

The Star Gazette plans to write additional articles about the levy in the coming weeks.

The board race

There are three open positions on the District 200 School Board. Incumbents Dan Cater and Angie McGinnis have filed for re-election. Three newcomers, Scott Gergen, Russ Rohloff and Herman Fasbender, also filed last month. Incumbent Teresa Moes did not file for another term, but remains on the School Board. (See separate story.)

There is no primary election – all names are on the ballots and voters can vote for up to three candidates to serve four-year terms.

Absentee voting

Absentee voting is now open for the election. Voters who will be absent from their precincts on Nov. 5 may request that an absentee ballot be sent to them.

The absentee ballot application is available at the district’s office at the Hastings Middle School 1000 W. 11th Street. and online at www.hastings.k12 Complete the application and return it to the district’s office.

The application must be signed to be valid and for a ballot to be sent to an individual.  People may also absentee vote in person at the District Office any day from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, continuing through Monday, Nov. 4.

For more information, contact Deanna Werner at 651-480-7002.