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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news : local May 24, 2016

11/5/2013 7:57:00 PM
Voters renew Mingus, COCSD budget overrides
Unofficial Override Election Results Yavapai County Elections Dept. 7:46 p.m.
Unofficial Override Election Results

Yavapai County Elections Dept.

7:46 p.m.

Mingus Union Override

Yes: 3917, 58.83 percent

No: 2741, 41.17 percent

Cottonwood-Oak Creek Override

Yes: 3143, 58.53 percent

No: 2227, 41.47 percent

Sedona-Oak Creek Override

Yes: 2994, 57.10 percent

No: 2249, 42.90 percent

Yvonne Gonzalez
Staff Reporter

Months of campaigning by parents and educators has earned the Cottonwood-Oak Creek and Mingus Union High School districts budget overrides that account for $1.5 million in funding.

Passed by slim margins in 2009, both overrides were renewed by about 58 percent of voters as of 8 p.m. Tuesday. The funds provide fine arts classes, electives, and counseling and intervention programs at each district. 

This year is Paul Tighe's first as superintendent at Mingus, and he said he's seen tremendous support for schools from the community. 

"It's a huge relief to know we can continue those services for kids," Tighe said. 

The overrides continue a monthly tax to homeowners totaling about $5.50 per $100,000 of their property's value, contributing about $600,000 more per year for Mingus and nearly $1 million for COCSD.

Tighe and COCSD Superintendent Barbara U'Ren delivered presentations to community groups in the months leading up to the election. State law prohibits administrators from promoting the override one way or the other while on district time, so members of Partners in Education, a coalition of about 60 pro-override volunteers, participated to convince people to vote yes. 

"Mingus has made great progress academically and people are satisfied with the bang for their buck," Tighe said of the preliminary election results. "They realize education is important and they don't want to see further cuts."

The two districts promoted their overrides together, and both were passing by about the same margin Tuesday night. U'Ren said COCSD is always looking for ways to work with Mingus. 

She said knowing now that the override will be there during the 2015-2016 academic year helps the district make long-term financial plans. 

"We always try to put together at least a three-year financial plan so that we are preparing for the future," she said. "We get hit here and there with surprises, but we are long-term planners."

U'Ren said the districts will continue to find ways to be more efficient while still benefiting students.

"The support from the community for education - we do not take it lightly," she said. 

Sedona-Oak Creek was in its first year of cutting out their override after it had failed in the past, but was succeeding by double digits Tuesday night.

Humboldt Unified School District lost its bid for a budget increase, no votes outnumbering yes votes by a margin of about 2 to 1. 

Chino Valley Unified School District's bond was failing by about 10 percent of the vote Tuesday night. 

The Prescott Unified School District was asking for a bond, which is failing by about 7 percent, a budget increase that failed by double digits, and a sale, lease or exchange of property that was approved by about 77 percent of the vote.

Related Stories:
• Yavapai County voters split on school budget issues
• Editorial: Excellent job by all on override success

Related Links:
• Yavapai County Election Results

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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, November 11, 2013
Article comment by: Cassandra of Yavapai is right!

Call the voter help at (928) 771-3250.

Or use link

Make sure your ballot was received and

Posted: Monday, November 11, 2013
Article comment by: Can't count our chickens yet!

As of Sunday afternoon, per the county's Preliminary Election Returns site:

942 ballots (out of 6,508) had been received but not counted in the C-OCSD override election. Those ballots are either missing a verifiable signature on the affidavit form, were double voted, or were unreadable (blank) by the optical-scan vote counting machine.

942 votes is only 14 votes less than a draw. That's too close, especially since at least 390 were verified and counted in the Mingus override election, and the County can't account for most of the 9,965 ballots issued to registered voters that were not returned to the Elections Division by 7 pm on November 5.

As it stands, the Director of Elections probably won't be able to certify this election, and I'm not sure what happens then.

Please, people, if you can hear the County Registrar and make sure your ballot was received, verified, and counted. These overrides are too important to too many people to just shrug and look away. If it's a verification problem, you can save your vote by running to Prescott and proving you're you.

Cassandra of Yavapai

Posted: Thursday, November 7, 2013
Article comment by: Tom Babbitt

I've already placed my daughter in a charter school and removed thousands of dollars from COSD. Now I'll give 10 dollars back a year as a token.
Just plain stupid!

Posted: Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Article comment by: old lady

I voted NO and I had that little sticker that said I voted on the back of my old van
. I added the word no, So it said I voted no.
I like the way all the teachers in all those expensive cars with the signs telling me what to do did not have everyone convinced.
I found it funny a lady in a 40 thousand dollar car with a vote yes sigh got all upset at my tiny I voted no sign.

Posted: Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Article comment by: Were Votes Counted In Public View?

Answer: NO!

We only have "reported" count not "pure/true"
count as required by state constitution...and also
required by every individual voter's "Full Voting
Rights"...this is fact regardless of a YES or NO

Our elected officials (state, county, local,
schools,) need to take action to change our
election laws to honor and respects individual
voter's rights.

Thanks and Good Luck,

Frank Henry
"Full Voting Rights" Advocate
Cottonwood, Arizona,
Tel: 928-649-0249

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