Horicon School District Looking Into Facilities Referendum

(Horicon) Voters in the Horicon School District could see a facilities referendum question on the April ballot. In September of 2016, a Citizen Advisory Committee was created to look into moving the football field and repairing the track course. Superintendent Rich Apple says that opened up exploration into addressing facility upgrades at Van Brunt Elementary and the Junior/Senior High School. The school board is looking into two potential referendum questions. The first would cost just under $23-million dollars and include building a new elementary school next to the high school as well as updating their security entrances. It would also relocate the district office to the high school. Apple says the preliminary mill rate impact if this question is approved would be an increase of .68-cents per one-thousand dollars of assed value. The second potential referendum question would cost roughly $3.6-million dollars and address infrastructure needs at the junior/senior high facility such as roof repairs, upgrading their HVAC system, updating electrical lines, and laying new ceiling and floor tiles in their hallways. The mille rate impact is anticipated to be $1.08 per one thousand dollars of assed value, if approved. No athletic improvements would be addressed in either referendum question. Apple says while there are areas to address with their athletics facility, fixing the Van Brunt and junior/senior high buildings were more pressing. He says it would be difficult to go fix the track or put in a new football field while there are physical needs at the school buildings. Apple says the district will look at other options, possibly to include private donations and fundraising to support their athletic facility needs. He says with debt falling off from previous projects, now is the time to move forward with this project because it will have less of an impact on the tax payers. The school board will meet Monday night at 7pm to review the final draft and consider approval of the referendum question. Apple says he will be holding discussion opportunities at several locations throughout the district to answer any questions residents have about the referendum.