Legislators will consider a bill during the 1989 session that would allow school districts to hold consolidation elections in conjunction with municipal elections.
The bill would change the current law, which requires that consolidation elections be held only during general elections. Under SB16, consolidations could be considered in any election year.The prefiled bill was prompted by discussions of consolidation during interim meetings of the Education Committee.
Several school districts would like to put consolidation considerations before their electorates without waiting for the 1990 election.
A legislative edict that all counties with more than one school district study consolidation led to extensive study of the issue over the past year. Most of the districts preferred to keep their current boundaries and concentrate on cooperation to cut costs.
However, Weber and Ogden districts told the interim committee they would like to hold an election to see if there is community support for consolidation. North Summit, South Summit and Park City also expressed some interest in a 1989 consolidation vote.
A consolidation election can be initiated by approval of the boards of education in each of the affected districts or by petition of 15 percent of the qualified voters in each of the districts. In either case, the county commissioners then are required to put the issue on the next ballot, if the SB16 amendments pass.