Proposition R passes with a landslide


Community members gathered to wait for the poll results, cheering when they learned that Prop R passed.

The community has spoken, and the Mehlville School District is now on track to restore its future.

On Tuesday (Nov. 3), students were off school to make room for voting at OHS. The Mehlville/Oakville ballot included Proposition R, a request for a 49-cent tax increase to restore the school district’s funding to operating levels. Parents, alumni, and other residents voiced their support for the district.

The result was astounding as 17,905 citizens voted yes on the measure, while 6,783 voted no. That means 72 percent of the community voted yes, an overwhelming “pass” for the issue. Only a simple majority was needed.

“I’m thankful it passed and overwhelmed by the margin,” Mehlville superintendent Dr. Chris Gaines said. “We are looking forward to utilizing these new resources to implement our strategic plan.”

This marks the first Mehlville School District tax increase in 29 years. Tax increases were rejected by voters in 1992, 1994, 2006, and 2010, although some other budget increases were passed in that time period.

The funds will be used to retain quality teachers, maintain district facilities, and create programs to help struggling students. Sixteen new teacher positions will be opened for the district, and schools will now receive textbooks and other instructional materials at 2004-2005 levels, much higher than they have been in recent years.

“This is a big step toward restoring the district and moving it forward,” Gaines told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.