Loading

44°F

44°F

45°F

44°F

45°F

44°F

48°F

46°F

45°F
NEWS STORIES

Will It Pass? Submitted: 02/05/2013
Story By Lex Gray & Kira Lynne

Play Video

THREE LAKES - Educating our children costs money.

But like many of us in this economy, school districts are struggling financially.

Add to that an aging population, declining enrollment, and less money from the state.

It's a tough equation - that's why Rhinelander, Three Lakes and Northland Pines school districts are asking taxpayers for more money.

All three districts go to a referendum vote on February 19.

Newswatch 12's Lex Gray and Kira Lynne went to each district to find out why they need the money and why you need to vote.

Since 1978, Steve Schacht has been teaching and counseling Three Lakes students.

He's seen a lot of changes. Expectations have changed.

"When I was a youngster, high school diploma was everything you needed," Schacht said. "That's not the case anymore."

Politics have changed.

"The change in Madison, the change with Act 10, has not exactly helped people's perception on teachers and education," he said.

The funding formula has changed, too.

At this point, we're penalized because we have a lot of expensive homes on the lake," Schacht said. "Yet our taxpayers are not the highest paid in the area."

But the one constant? Three Lakes pride.

"I think the message that we like to tell our students is, when you leave Three Lakes, you have the ability to do anything you want."

But it seems that's part of the problem people leave Three Lakes and they don't come back. Enrollment in the district has been sliding since 1998.

Declining enrollment doesn't mean a declining education. ACT scores have gone up here.

In fact, Three Lakes has the highest ACT scores in our area.

But those ACT scores don't get the district any more money.

Three Lakes is headed to its fourth referendum in ten years.

"Our community has given our kids the best gift they can, which is a good, solid education," Schacht said. "I trust that they'll do the right thing this year and also pass the referendum."

The odds are in the district's favor. The last vote passed by 74 percent.

The district is telling homeowners a "Yes" vote will cost $58 per year for a $100,000 home.

But a "no" vote could cost even more.

"If we can't fund education, the Three Lakes School District might cease to exist," Schacht said.

Three Lakes could be absorbed by either Rhinelander or Northland Pines both at a higher cost than staying independent.

No matter what, taxes will go up.

"It's a tough sell. No one would like to see their taxes go up, no one wants to pay any taxes," Schacht said. "But if you have to pay taxes, the most important one in my mind is education."

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 10/23/2014

- You can vote in the upcoming election before November 4th. In-person absentee voting started Monday. We'll tell you what Northwoods clerks say about how the process has been going.

- Plus, North Central Technical College recently received a huge grant that will go to their geriatric healthcare program. We'll hear from leaders at NTC on why the money is so important to our community.

We'll have the details on these stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

+ Read More
Hunters kill 98 Wisconsin wolves, season could be over soonSubmitted: 10/23/2014

WISCONSIN - It looks like Wisconsin's third wolf season could be over soon.

The season began on Oct. 15. It's slated to run until Feb. 28 or until hunters reach the 150-animal statewide kill limit.

The Department of Natural Resources says hunters had bagged 98 wolves as of Wednesday, leaving them 52 shy of the statewide quota. The DNR closed four of its six wolf zones over the last week after hunters quickly reached or exceeded zone-specific kill limits.

+ Read More
International group considers Wisconsin one of four most improved states in energy efficiency Submitted: 10/23/2014

WISCONSIN - An international energy efficiency group ranked Wisconsin in the top four most improved states in the U.S. when it comes to energy efficiency.

American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) is an international non-profit. The group pushes for better energy efficiency around the world.

They ranked Wisconsin 23rd in the U.S. last year, but Wisconsin made their most improved list for 2014.

"A shift in efficiency administrators had caused a temporary drop in saving," ACEEE State Policy Research Analyst Annie Gilleo said. "We are seeing that Wisconsin is once again realizing consistent levels of electricity and natural gas savings."

+ Read More
Dems fault Walker for not seeking preschool grantSubmitted: 10/23/2014

MADISON - Gov. Scott Walker's administration has not applied for up to $60 million in preschool development grants from the federal government, a move Democrats decried as irresponsible.

The deadline for states to apply for as much as $250 million from the U.S. departments of Education and Health and Human Services is Friday.

+ Read More
Appeals court rejects John Doe rehearing requestSubmitted: 10/23/2014

MADISON - A federal appeals court has unanimously rejected a conservative group's request to reconsider a ruling last month tossing a lawsuit challenging an investigation into possible illegal campaign coordination.

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday rejected the request from Wisconsin Club for Growth to rehear the case after a three-judge panel last month sided with investigators.

+ Read More
Trial continues in 2008 Wisconsin Rapids killingSubmitted: 10/23/2014

WISCONSIN RAPIDS - Jurors have watched a 7-year-old police interview with a 55-year-old Wisconsin Rapids man accused in a shooting death.

Joseph Reinwand is charged with first-degree intentional homicide in the death of Dale Meister. The 35-year-old Wisconsin Rapids man was found dead in his home on March 4, 2008.

+ Read More
20 flu-related hospitalizations in Wisconsin so far in OctoberSubmitted: 10/22/2014

MADISON - State health officials say the flu season is off to a strong start in Wisconsin.

State epidemiologist Thomas Haupt says influenza hospitalizations have been unexpectedly on the rise in October. 20 people have been hospitalized in the past three weeks. Haupt tells WISN-TV (http://bit.ly/1wo5JOD ) one or two hospitalizations are common this time of year, but not 20.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here