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Forum staff reports, Published December 17 2012

Vote for new school, fire hall fails in Rothsay

ROTHSAY, Minn. – A $24 million bond referendum to build a new school here failed on Monday night, according to a WDAY news report.

It was defeated by 12 votes on Monday night, 289 to 277, WDAY reported. A simple majority was required to pass the referendum.

The referendum was for construction on a new 100,000-square-foot pre-kindergarten through 12th grade school building, and also to help pay for a new fire hall and community center.

A new space would’ve solved space issues and avoid costs of trying to modernize the old building, which dates back to 1903, Superintendent Warren Schmidt said.

If it would’ve passed, the owner of a $70,000 home would’ve seen a $14 tax cut, but taxes on a $100,000 home would’ve gone up $63 a year. Pricier homes and businesses would’ve seen larger tax jumps.

Rothsay’s public school had 213 students at the end of the 2010-11 school year, but now has about 260 students in grades pre-K through 12, Schmidt said.