MAPS renewal approved

MARQUETTE – Area voters Tuesday approved Marquette Area Public Schools’ operational millage renewal request by a more than 4 to 1 margin.

“It’s a great day. It’s a day to celebrate. It’s a win for our students and it’s a win for the exceptional teaching staff that we have,” said MAPS board President Rich Rossway. “We’re thrilled with the result and I think what’s really important is that we continue to run an efficient district and that these tax dollars are going to be spent carefully with the best interest of the students and the taxpayers in mind.”

The vote came in with 2,330 in favor and 561 against.

The millage, which was renewed for 20 years, will generate about $8.43 million in its first year, or roughly one third of the district’s total operating budget.

The request also included a .5 mill increase, which will act as a cushion against potential Headlee rollbacks.

The 1978 Headlee Amendment to the Michigan Constitution requires local units of government to reduce their millage rates when annual growth on existing property is more than the rate of inflation.

To receive the full 18 mills – and make up what was lost through Headlee reductions – the state requires districts to ask voters for an increase in the authorized mill rate above 18 mills, though they cannot collect more than 18 mills.

Jackie Stark can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 242.