Wisconsin school districts’ have extensive debt


MILWAUKEE – The state of Wisconsin’s school district’s is dire. Remodeled buildings, and other amenities, including technology and security upgrades have led to school districts running on a tight budget. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, a report shows that state approved referendums borrowed $1.35 billion last year.

That cost is 10 times more than in 2011 and the most since the alliance began keeping records in 1993. The previous high, adjusted for inflation, was $1.04 billion in 1996.

In per-pupil terms, the report says, borrowing has more than tripled from $2,313 in 2010 to $9,733 last year. And it shows no signs of abating. This spring, 23 districts have  asked or will ask voters to approve nearly $708 million in new debt.

School districts defend the rise in debt, saying the improvements are needed to accommodate growing enrollment or to upgrade and maintain facilities in an increasingly competitive educational environment. And most districts remain well-below their state-imposed borrowing caps, Taxpayer Alliance Research Director Dale Knapp said.

For more information on that state of Wisconsin’s school districts, visit Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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