Voters in Henry County turned down a proposal to merge the Cambridge and Alwood school districts and decided to keep them separate from each other.
Supporters said that the merger would create more class options. Opponents of the plan argued that combining the districts would create longer bus routes and would ultimately raise taxes.
The districts admitted that the merger wouldn't have improved the budget immediately, and could have increased property taxes.
Cambridge Superintendent, Thomas Akers says the turned down proposal could be a result of the tough economy.
“It’s a sign of the times, we are still struggling. Rural America is struggling in the economy that we have. I think that might have been a … factor especially for those on a fixed income,”says Akers.
Voters in both towns shot the proposal down, with those in Cambridge casting 538 no votes compared to 385 yes and those in Alwood voting against the merger 543 to 338. To merge, both communities needed to approve the measure.