Campaign Launched To Support Tax Increase For Jacksonville District

Jan 5, 2016

Image of proposed Jacksonville High School.
Credit WER Architects/Planners

In about a month, Jacksonville residents will be asked to vote to increase the millage tax as the newly developed Jacksonville North Pulaski School District needs to fund several projects. Tuesday evening, a kick-off event showed the rendering for a new high school.

The district is asking for an additional 7.6-mill, hoping to fund a new high school, new elementary school, and four multi-purpose rooms to be added to four current elementary schools; Bayou Meto, Pinewood, Warren Dupree, Murrell Taylor.

Following 95 percent of Jacksonville voters who voted to be their own school district, JNPSD is now asking for a 7.6-mill increase.

"As a teacher, I believe that the best buildings are going to be the best possible way for our kids to learn, for them to succeed and also to compete with the other schools around us," said Jacksonville Middle School teacher Sydney York.

At Tuesday night's kick-off event, which was held by the Education Corps - a group of community leaders, business leaders, and concerned parents supporting this effort - a rendition of the new high school was unveiled. School officials tell Channel 7 News, they anticipate about 1,200 students to share the new grounds.

"Knowing that they have the opportunity to do something that Jacksonville has traditionally done pretty well, for example, the Education Center with the Little Rock Air Force Base, we taxed ourselves to fund the construction of that facility and so I'm really confident that the city will turn out to support this as well," said Roger Sundermeier, Jacksonville resident.

"The high school that's existing will no longer be used, so we're going to move it to a new location, it's going to be extremely visible from 67/167, so something new and exciting for our community," said Laura Walker, Millage Campaign Committee spokeswoman.

The special election will be held on February 9; early voting will start February 2.

Click here for more information and for polling locations.

The total proposed school tax levy of 48.3 mills represents a 7.6 mill increase over the rate presently being levied.