Area school district faces possible closure without referendum - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Area school district faces possible closure without referendum

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THREE LAKES (WAOW) -

The Three Lakes School District is asking voters to help them keep their doors open. On the November 7 ballot the district will ask people to vote on a referendum worth roughly $15 million throughout the next five years.

"If it doesn't pass we can not balance our budget, we can not conduct business because we will not have any money," said Three Lakes Superintendent George Karling. "The school really is a focal part of our community."

This will be the fifth time the district is asking for a referendum for the operating budget. The school has faced a problem on declining enrollment throughout the years.

"We are among the fastest declining enrollment school districts in the state of Wisconsin, we've lost a rolling three year average of 306 students," said Karling.

The last referendum will end after this school year, which is why the district is turning to voters again. The roughly $3 million per year would be an extra $54 a year on a property value of $100,000.

"Basically $744,000 more than what we have now on the levy, that'll amount to roughly half a mil," said Karling.

Parents and community members said they're on board for the referendum.

"I loved this school district since we moved here," said parent Colette Mahlerwein. "To see it succeed is certainly something that should be important to all of us."

The district held their first public information meeting Monday in Three Lakes, they will have one in Sugar Camp on Wednesday at 6 p.m. and one in Monico on Thursday at 6 p.m.

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