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Superintendent says there is no Plan B if Coldwater school millage fails in November

COLDWATER, MI (WTVB) - Coldwater School Superintendent Dr. Tina Kerr has laid out the worst case scenario if an operational millage renewal is not approved by voters two weeks from today. Kerr spoke at last night’s meeting of the Branch County Township Supervisor’s Association.  She said there’s no plan-B available if the proposal is defeated and if that happens, the school system would suffer a loss of $5.5 million,  or 22% of the budget. The millage, which expired July 1, 2013, covers non-homestead properties with principal residences exempt while also impacted are commercial/industrial properties. Failure of the levy renewal would immediately mean the layoff of 57 teachers and the potential cut of all transportation and athletics. Basically, Kerr said there’s no way for the Coldwater School District to function without the 18 mills in question.

The ballot language reads taxes will be increased, but technically speaking, it’s not a hike. It’s listed that way because the operating millage went back to zero when it expired this summer. Saturday, November 2nd is the last day to vote by absentee ballot for the Tuesday, November 5th election.