Lake County schools want voter referendum to keep school security tax

TAVARES, Florida. – The Lake County School Board wants to ask voters to keep a special tax to improve school safety.

The council agreed on Tuesday to ask the Board of County Commissioners to hold a referendum on the November election ballot asking voters to keep the tax.

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The 75-cent mile tax, on top of property taxes, has been levied since 2019 following the deadly school shooting in Parkland, to help pay for state-mandated school safety improvements that required more money than the state provided.

The Lake County School District said it uses tax revenue to pay:

  • Psychologists, social workers and counselors to help struggling students

  • Put nurses in every school

  • Hire and retain school security guards

  • Open Lake Success Academy to provide short-term alternative educational placements and programs for at-risk students

  • Create the PASS program to remove students with disciplinary references from the classroom while allowing them to continue attending school

District leaders say that without the renewal of the levy, the programs could end.

It is unclear when the Lake County Commission will approve the referendum.

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