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UPDATE | Precinct analysis shows support for Bainbridge school levy topped 80 percent in Winslow, Crystal Springs
Voters on Bainbridge Island gave a beefy boost to public schools with their landslide approval of two three-year levies on Election Day, but no where was the support more stunning than in Crystal Springs and Winslow.
An analysis of unofficial precinct returns in the Feb. 11 Special Election by the Bainbridge Review shows that eight-in-10 voters in the precincts of Winslow and Crystal Springs voted "yes" for Proposition 1, the Bainbridge Island School District's Educational Programs and Operations Levy.
In Winslow, 80 percent of voters approved Prop. 1. In Crystal Springs, 82 percent of voters voted for the levy.
Bainbridge as a whole approved both the operations levy and a tech levy by a wide margin on Election Day.
In early returns, the operations levy was passing with a 75 percent "yes" vote. The tech levy was passing with 71 percent of voters in favor of the measure.
School supporters were jubilant after the first tally was announced Tuesday night.
“We are thrilled with the results of this election. Bainbridge Island came out in force to support kids and schools," said Janet Woolever and Scott Reynvaan, co-chairs of Bainbridge Island Public School Supporters, the campaign for the levies. "We are so grateful to live in a community that is committed to investing in our future.”
The Kitsap County Election Division is expected to announce a new vote count for the Special Election late Wednesday. Kitsap County has an estimated 4,000 ballots in hand yet to count from voters across the county.
The vote for the operations levy exceeded landslide proportions across much of Bainbridge, according to unofficial precinct returns from the Election Night tally.
The measure was approved by more than 75 percent of voters in 10 of the island's 22 precincts.
After Crystal Springs and Winslow, the levy found its strongest support in the precincts of Blue Heron (79 percent), Manzanita (76), Rolling Bay (76), Azalea (76), Meadowmeer (75), Ferncliff (75), Blakely (73) and Lovgren (73).
Support ebbed under 70 percent in only three precincts on Bainbridge, but not by much. Voters in Eagle Harbor, Finch and Liberty all approved the levy with a 69 percent "yes" vote.
Though the tech levy was also resoundingly approved, with an average of seven-in-10 voters casting ballots in favor of the measure across the island, support for Proposition 2 was relatively weaker than its companion levy on the ballot.
Backing for Prop. 2 was one to eight points lower than Prop. 1 in precincts across Bainbridge, according to unofficial precinct tallies.
Prop. 2 found its most eager endorsement in the precincts of Winslow, where support hit the 78 percent mark, and Crystal Springs, with 77 percent voting "yes."
Ten other precincts approved Prop. 2 above its islandwide average of 71.74 percent; Blue Heron (76 percent), Finch (75), Manzanita (73), Lovgren (73), Ferncliff (72), Fort Ward (72) and Azalea (71.77).
Assessments for the two levies, which will replace current levies that expire at the end of this year, will begin in 2015.
The two levies, combined with already-approved existing bonds for schools, will raise the total levy rate next year to $3.65 per $1,000 of assessed property value.
District officials said the measures will mean an approximate $7 per month increase in property taxes for the owner of a median-priced home valued at $455,000.