Do-Over Meeting to Deal With KUSD Levy, Board Stipends, Expected

Oct. 13, 2021 2:45p

(WGTD)---A special meeting of voters in the Kenosha Unified School District is expected to be held in the coming days to ostensibly overturn some decisions made at the district's annual meeting of electors that was held last month.

A group called the "Education Justice Coalition" is decrying votes that were taken in September to slash the tax levy and cut compensation levels for school board members. The annual meeting, which is required by law for common school districts, is usually a poorly-attended affair that's stacked with school board supporters. This year, a conservative group took control of the meeting. 

State statutes allow for special meetings to be called with as few as 100 valid signatures. The citizens' group presented 317 signatures at the Educational Support Center Wednesday, according to district spokesperson Tanya Ruder.

Ruder said the signatures will be reviewed to make sure theiy're valid. Then the district will consult with legal counsel to determine the next steps. 

While electors' meetings are open to the public, only residents of the district are allowed to vote on matters that come before the body.

While September's vote on the district's tax levy was advisory, the school board member compensation cuts took effect immediately.

Board members had been paid $6,500 annually. A majority of the electors at September's meeting cut that to $100 per regular board meeting. The board usually meets once a month. Per diem pay--the amount that board members can collect for tending to district business that pulls them away from their regular employment--was also reduced.