You have questions. The City of Litchfield and Litchfield Public Schools have answers.
At least that’s the aim of a new website the two entities launched last week, which focuses on the Litchfield area leisure center project.
Specifically, the site seeks to answer questions that area residents — and potential voters — might have about the referendum questions that will appear on the November general election ballot.
“This website has been designed to be a comprehensive information resource for residents wishing to learn more about referendums,” said Dave Cziok, Administrator for the Town of Litchfield. “We understand how important it is to provide voters with all the information they need to make an informed decision on this community issue.”
The website – LiveWellLitchfieldArea.org – previously launched in August, ahead of the Meeker County Fair. At the time, it contained preliminary information regarding the recreation center and referendum efforts.
The full launch now offers users a wide range of resources, in addition to more detailed descriptions of activities and equipment the center could support. The website includes a tax calculator that allows school district property owners to determine the tax impact that a school district bond, which would be used for the construction of the pool portion of the recreation center, would have on their property. . Additionally, residents can find their polling location and other voting information on the website.
Litchfield Public Schools is seeking voters’ permission to issue $13.5 million in bonds to fund its portion of the center, including an eight-lane swimming pool, locker rooms, offices and community spaces, as well as various upgrades of the site.
The owner of a $170,000 home — the district average — would see his property taxes increase by $6.84 a month or about $82 a year from 2023, if bail is approved by voters.
School District Business Manager Jesse Johnson also pointed out at a recent Litchfield School Board meeting that the state’s Ag2School program offers a 70% property tax credit that could fund about 17% of the part of the school of the establishment.
Also on the November 8 ballot will be a question from the city regarding a local option sales tax. The half per cent sales tax, which would be paid by anyone shopping in Litchfield, must be approved by town residents before it can take effect.
The state Legislature included $5 million in its surety bill passed in the 2021 session, with terms of the grant requiring the city and school to collaborate on a wellness center/ Recreation.
The municipal portion of the proposed facility would include a four-station pavilion, elevated walking track, community rooms, fitness space, family change rooms and additional support spaces.
In public presentations, town and school officials highlighted the rare collaborative nature of the Litchfield Area Recreation Center and the potential it has to serve a large area.
“The process is going well,” school board president Darrin Anderson said at the Aug. 22 meeting. “There’s a lot of information going around.”
While staffing the school district booth at the Meeker County Fair, Anderson said, board members and school administrators “helped educate a lot of people who had a lot of questions and helped clarify a lot of things. things”.
Now, he added, the website offers even more “a solid base to watch. We have the tools to help spread the information.