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Dodge named new Ellsworth Middle School principal

Jon Dodge was approved Monday night by the Ellsworth School Board as its new middle school principal following the resignation of Pete Nussbaum.

Dodge was previously the assistant high school principal. Superintendent Barry Cain said Tuesday morning the board approved a salary of $94,000 for Dodge. Cain added, restructuring of middle school administration will result in a half-time assistant principal and half-time teacher, after the retirement of present Assistant Principal Tim Brunner, recently announced.

In other action, the board okayed a resolution authorizing the issuance and sale of approximately $1,570,000 in general obligation refunding bonds. The action addresses existing building debt from the past in the school district.

A representative of Baird, financial advisors, told members it should result in a savings of around $56,000, based on a new interest rate of .69 percent, compared to the old rate of 3.7 percent. It’s advantageous to act now because interest rates are at their lowest point of the year.

Superintendent Barry Cain reminded the board the savings won’t affect the annual budget and isn’t part of the $900,000 or so in cuts presently being made.

The Baird representative understood this regards the last debt issue the district has that can be refinanced. She then shared several informational items about the district’s projected tax levy, indicating the aforementioned debt should be gone in four years, the tax levy available and more, emphasizing a need to be mindful of the potential for debt to get out of control.

An operational referendum which would have kept debt in check failed in February, she said. Under the current situation, including a previously authorized override now expiring, expenses will continue to be ahead of revenues.

For more please read the May 14 print version of the Herald. 

Bill Kirk

Bill Kirk was editor of the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth, from 1988 to February, 2015 and is now on staff as a reporter. He holds a bachelors degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He previously worked in the media distribution department at the University of Minnesota's Minneapolis campus and is past editor of The Tri-County News in Osseo, Wisconsin.

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