Voters in Murray won't have a lot to say during this election about school board members - all three candidates are unopposed. But voters will have to decide whether to approve a 2-mill property-tax increase that district officials say would be tied to student academic performance.
The proposed tax increase, also known as a leeway tax, would translate to about $17 per year on a $70,000 home, district officials say.The district has told the Utah Taxpayers Association that the tax increase would not be continued without measurable improvement in student performances.
The estimated $360,000 in additional funding would be used to reduce class sizes, hire additional counselors for elementary and secondary schools and maintain competitive salaries for district employees. If the tax increase is approved, a citizens advisory committee at the end of the 1995-96 school year would evaluate how well the additional funding helped meet the district's goals.
District Superintendent Ronald L. Stephens has said that if student learning doesn't increase with the increased spending, the money will have been wasted.
In School Board Precinct 2, incumbent Bruce R. Cutler is unopposed. He also ran in 1986 without opposition. This precinct covers the southwest part of Murray.
In Precinct 3, incumbent Joyce Anderson is not seeking re-election after two terms on the board. Precinct 3 covers the northeast part of the city
D. Earl Townsend, 62, is the only candidate who filed to succeed her.
Townsend has been involved with the Murray Chamber of Commerce, the Lions Club, the PTA, Murray Recreation Leagues and other civic functions. He is employed by the Arthur Frank clothing store at the Cottonwood Mall as a salesman. He is a lifelong resident of Murray and ran against Anderson unsuccessfully four years ago.
In Precinct 4, incumbent Laura S. Baker is running unopposed for a third term on the board. She also was unopposed four years ago. Her precinct comprises the east-central section of Murray, in places extending as far west at 300 West, north to Murray Park and south to 5900 South.