Michigan City Area Schools career center referendum (2009)

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The Michigan city area schools career center referendum appeared on the May 19, 2009 ballot in LaPorte County, Indiana in Michigan City. The referendum determined whether or not the school district should borrow approximately $39.5 million to build a 150,000-square-foot career and technical center adjacent to Michigan City High School. The measure was defeated.[1].[2]

  • Yes: 1,200 (32.43%)
  • No: 2,500 (67.57%) Defeatedd

The school board originally agreed to the career center but in January 2009 Charles Morgan took on a petition drive to bring the matter to the voters via referendum. As of January Morgan gathered 125 signatures, enough to put the referendum on the ballot.[3]

The impact that the new career center will have on property tax is estimated to be less than $4 a month for the owner of a $100,000 house, according to Michigan city officials.[4]

Supporters

Residents argue that the career center would attract more businesses to Michigan city and that it would provide an avenue for students who may not have much interest in traditional academics. The News-Dispatch quoted Tim Bietry, president of the Michigan City Area Chamber of Commerce as saying, "Many individuals, organizations and businesses believe that a new career and technical center is crucial to the economic health of our city and the surrounding area."

Opponents

Others, however, said that they are not against the concept but are against the expenditure. Morgan, who organized the petition drive, said that he believes a program for the career center should be outlined before a facility is considered.[5]

References