This story was updated at 5 p.m. Nov. 8.
As officials continue to count election ballots, early numbers lean in favor of voters passing measure 5A, while 5B for the Douglas County School District is being rejected.
The 4:23 p.m. Nov. 8 count showed 52% of voters passing the $66 million mill levy override to increase staff compensation and 52% of voters failing the $484 million bond for schools. This is only the second time in the past 17 years that voters in Douglas County have approved a mill levy override for the school district.
The $66 million mill levy override will fund an average of a 9% salary increase for teachers and help close the salary gap between Douglas County and other metro area districts. Funding will also go to increasing staff compensation across the board and expanding school resource officers in elementary schools.
On election night, Kane said she is cautiously optimistic about the results of the mill levy override and the community coming out to support teachers and school staff.
“I am so happy for my teachers because they absolutely deserve to be paid more competitively,” she said. “The results that they’ve generated for our kids are unbelievable.”
Going into the 2023-24 school year, Kane said the district was in a “crisis” because of the inability to offer competitive compensation to staff. Kane said the passage of the override will help close that competitive gap.
“We were in a competitive crisis and this absolutely helps alleviate that,” she said.
The $484 million bond would have funded three new elementary schools, the expansion of two middle schools and building maintenance across the district, including security upgrades.
Kane said the district plans to regroup following the failure of the bond and look for creative solutions to the district’s areas of growing enrollment.
Community elections are dynamic, so this story may be updated as new information becomes available.
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