Special Education Millage Vote - May 5, 2015

On Tuesday, May 5, 2015, voters in Kalamazoo County will be asked to vote on a 6-year, 1.5 mill property tax to help fund the operation of our schools.


Special education services in the county are substantially underfunded, which creates a great deal of pressure on the general education budgets of local school districts. At one time all special education services were funded through dedicated special education sources. However, these sources have not kept up with special education needs.

Since special education services are largely required by federal and state laws, Kalamazo County school districts have had to fund these otherwise unfunded costs out of their limited operating budgets. Districts across Kalamazoo County are now funding approximately $11 million of special education costs from their operating budgets. Kalamazoo Public Schools alone is funding over $5 million from its operating budget, which reduces programming for general education students.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What would be the impact to schools across the county and Kalamazoo Public Schools if this millage question is approved?

A: For many years local school districts have needed to make significant budget cuts, primarily due to the state's underfunding of public education. Kalamazoo Public Schools has cut $10 million over the last five years, and districts across the state have cut amounts more or less proportionate to their sizes. The requirement to spend more of their operating budgets for special education services has created the need for even greater cuts to general education programming. If approved, this millage will be used the Kalamazoo Regional Educational Service Agency (KRESA) to substantially or fully reimburse school districts for the existing shortage in special education funding.

Q: How much would this request cost the taxpayer?

A: The proposal would increase taxes by $75 annually for a home with a taxable market value of $100,000.

Q: Who can vote in this election?

A: Any registered voter that resides in a school district within the KRESA service area can vote in this election. Registered voters from all districts in the county may vote: Climax-Scotts, Comstock, Galesburg-Augusta, Gull Lake, Kalamazoo, Parchment, Portage, Schoolcraft and Vicksburg.

Q: When is the last day to register to vote?

A: The last day to register to vote in this election is April 6, 2015.

Q: How can I find out where to vote?

A: You can look up where you vote at the Michigan Voter Information Center

You can also contact the clerk's office in the city or township where you reside. For Kalamazoo voters these offices are as follows:

Q: Can I vote by absentee ballot?

A: You can vote by absentee ballot if you:

Absentee ballots must be requested from the city or township clerk where you reside.

Please Vote

Please vote in this election. The polls will be open from 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM on Tuesday, May 5, 2015.