Princeton, Illinois schools regroup after voters turn down $35-million referendum

Vintage display inside Logan School in Princeton, Illinois, on Wednesday, November 7, 2018.

PRINCETON, Illinois –

Logan School was destined for demolition, but that may change after voters turned down a property tax hike for school improvements.

The $35-million referendum didn’t miss by much. It missed passing by just under 200 votes.

“This referendum did not fail because that would be unfair to our community,” said Superintendent Tim Smith, on Wednesday, November 7.  “They helped us make a decision.”

The decision delayed building a new school, demolishing two others and funding other improvement projects.  This was the first vote following three years of study.

“I think property taxes are a difficult thing for people,” Smith continued.  “Certainly, in the state of Illinois, and it’s no different here.”

More decisions now await this district of 1,100 students.  Tuesday’s vote shared the ballot with a successful, sales tax-based jail referendum.

The results are still encouraging after earning some 2,500 votes.

“This community has been amazingly supportive of our district, so we’re not hanging our heads today,” Smith said.

He and his board will be stepping back to evaluate and decide where to go next.  Millions of dollars in renovations are still looming in the future.

“We’re going to pick up the pieces and move forward,” he concluded.