EMMETT, Idaho -- With the start of school looming, some Southern Idaho districts are hoping to go back to school with a little more money by asking for levies, but in many cases, districts had levy elections fail just months ago.
The Parma School District is holding an election for a plant facility levy. Leaders are hopeful that it will pass, considering a supplemental and COSSA levy passed in May.
But, Homedale School District is trying again to pass a supplemental levy, after they had a similar levy fail in May. School leaders say, they're vital, but voters in that last election said they're not.
Emmett is another district hoping for a different result this time around. In May, the Emmett School District held a supplemental levy election, which failed by 39 votes.
The district eliminated more than 20 teachers and staff, including their Spanish teacher, which means the high school no longer has a foreign language program.
"I do need two years of foreign language for most colleges, and I've taken my first year with the teacher. But, now that he's gone, I'll have to finish it online. It's inconvenient, but that's the effects that happen when we run out of money," said Emmett High School Senior Dustin Fox.
Emmett Schools Superintendent Wayne Rush says that's one of the reasons why the district is trying to pass a similar levy on the 27. "We just need more teachers."
Rush says the money would allow the district to hire back some teachers and staff whose positions were eliminated after that levy failed. It would also pay for a brand new covering on the 25-year-old roof at the high school.
"You can see patches, and things growing out of it," said Rush. "On a rainy day here in some spots, you can actually see the water seeping through."
If the levy fails again, Rush says they'll have to continue to make cuts.
District estimates have the levy costing the average homeowner another $37.50 per year in taxes. But opponents have said that with unemployment still hovering around 9 percent in the county, that families here can't afford this, and the district should just be more efficient.
But Rush says, it's a worthy investment. "We're not asking for huge amounts of money. It is money, and it means something for people in the community that are on fixed incomes, and others. Certainly, it means something, and we need to be efficient people. But, there is a point where we also have to support our kids."
Down in the Magic Valley, the Cassia School District is trying to renew a levy to help pay for major repairs at their 59 facilities. It's a cut-down version of a levy that failed in March, and it would mean another $5.97 per year for the average homeowner.
While election day is on August 27, early voting has already started, and you can stop by or call your local county courthouse for more information or to vote.