Baldwin County Public Schools Superintendent is pleased to hear the results of a News-5/Strategy Poll, but remains cautious ahead of Tuesday’s school tax renewal vote.
According to the exclusive poll, 66-percent of registered voters say they support the tax renewal.
“It is encouraging that possibly the citizens in Baldwin County are putting an emphasis on the future of our children’s education, and putting and this funding is vital,” said Superintendent Eddie Tyler.
These renewals were voted down last year, when Baldwin County residents revolted against a big, publically funded campaign, to promote new, additional taxes that were also voted down. Many remain opposed to the renewals.
“Most of us who are supporting the no vote is because we have the same school board as we had before and there’s been no accountability for the failure of the Build Baldwin Now Campaign,” said convenience store owner Kevin Spriggs who led the fight against the taxes last year and is doing the same this year.
But this time around, the school board and school system employees using public funds have stayed on the sidelines and let a group of citizens and business leaders run a low-key campaign that, at this point, seems to be working.
“They’ve done an outstanding job,” said Tyler. “This board has stepped back and let the citizens take the message to the citizens.”
Despite what appears to be a comfortable lead, members of that citizens group, the Baldwin Education Coalition, say they won’t rest until Tuesday night.
“It makes me feel better but we’re not letting our guard down,” said Tommy Faust, board member on the Baldwin Education Coalition. “We know that we have to get the message out.”
The renewals will actually appear as two separate items on the ballot: one for one-mill, and the other for three mills. The taxes have been in effect for more than a century.