Camas, WA — Voters in Camas passed two education replacement levies — the Educational Programs & Operations (EP&O) levy and the Technology capital levy — by healthy margins Tuesday, according to unofficial results from Clark County Elections.
Proposition 4 passed with 53 percent of the vote, and Proposition 5 passed with 55 percent. Both three-year levies were set to expire in 2021. Camas School District (CSD) asked voters to consider approval of two replacement levies that will allow CSD to continue the same level of service students, teachers and families have enjoyed for decades.
“I’m feeling good,” said CSD Superintendent, Dr. Jeff Snell. “The results are good right now. We are cautiously optimistic and grateful to the community. It’s been a tough year, and we need to continue to serve our students and families. I know whether you vote yes or no you care about the kids and staff. I appreciate people that recognize that and we need to keep doing this as best we can. It’s nice to be on the plus side of 50 percent.”
Snell also expressed sadness for Battle Ground School District, which also held a levy vote today. Their levy failed 53-46 percent.
In a recent interview, Snell said the following:
“Camas community has supported schools through local levies for more than 40 years. Initially, levies provided money for things that cannot be funded by state, or basic education, dollars like extra-curricular activities. Over time, state funding did not keep pace with actual costs, and lawmakers pushed the burden on local communities to fill the gap with levy dollars.
“Our levies make up to about 20 percent of our budget. If we were to align our budget to State and Federal funding, we would not be able to continue extra-curricular activities. Classroom sizes, breakfast and lunch prices, and the length of time students spend on the bus would all increase. Additionally, many employees would lose their jobs. The amount of money we would have to maintain or replace computers, roofs, and HVAC systems would be almost non-existent.
“Most of our parents cite Camas Schools as the reason they moved to Camas. It is our community support that makes our schools strong and vibrant.
Extracurricular activities are: all sports programs, all club activities, academic teams, to pay for coaching assignments, and pay for the costs of running the activities, which includes concerts and activities outside the school day. These activities have really become a part of our culture, it’s who we are.”