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Maintenance & Operations Budget Override Re-authorization

The MaranaThankYouVoters_Branded.png Unified School District thanks the community for supporting Proposition 448, Maintenance & Operation Budget Override Re-authorization, in the Special Election on Tuesday, November 8. 

The continuation of the 10% override, previously approved by voters in 2007 and 2011, spared $6.7 million in reductions from the MUSD budget; maintaining critical classroom support and programs, and retaining high quality teachers and staff.  
We are grateful that our community showed their support for our schools and their commitment to the children in our community through the passage of our budget override. This support represents the strong partnership and trust that exists between our schools, parents, and community. We further recognize that public schools play a valuable role in the long term economic success of Marana, and we are committed to providing the highest quality education while ensuring we are good stewards of resources entrusted to us. Through the approval of the override, our District will continue to provide a diverse educational experience to ensure our students are prepared with the skills they need to be successful in the 21st century.

School districts can only be successful with the commitment of many hard working, dedicated individuals and the support of the parents and members within the community. With this is mind, I extend our deep appreciation to the Political Action Committee, as well as many other dedicated individuals who worked tirelessly to rally support of the override. These individuals spent countless hours advocating on behalf of our students and staff. Their exceptional hard work demonstrates commitment to our District and passion for quality public education in our community.

The Marana district is pleased to be a part of this community and we thank you for placing your trust in us. 

Warm Regards,
Doug Wilson, Ed.D.



Marana Unified School District held a special 10% maintenance and operation budget override re-authorization election on Tuesday, November 8, 2016. Voters approved the override to continue the existing 10% override that was previously approved by the voters in 2007 and 2011. 

Continuing the budget override is not a request for new funding or programs. The budget override shall be funded from a levy of taxes on the taxable property within the District and be in effect for a period of seven years.

The budget override will not create a new tax. Upon reauthorization, the estimated associated tax rate will remain approximately equal to the existing tax rate. 

If the override was not approved by the voters, the District would have experienced a $6,700,000 reduction to the budget resulting in unavoidable increases in class size and the elimination or reduction in the level of classroom and support services it currently provides students in the following areas:

  • School aides
  • Counseling
  • Full day kindergarten
  • Library 
  • Athletics
  • Physical education
  • Fine Arts
  • Extra-curricular Activities
  • Remedial, Elective Courses, and Advanced classes. School aides

What is a M&O Budget Override? 
Arizona State law sets strict statewide limits on the amount which school districts can spend on the education of students. Arizona State Law also allows school districts to increase their Maintenance and Operation (M&O) budget up to 15% of the state formula (Revenue Control Limit) if approved by the voters of the district. MUSD is requesting voter reauthorization for the current 10% override and not seeking the statutory limit of 15%. The Revenue Control Limit is a state formula that determines how much funding school districts are allowed to spend each year. 

What is a M&O budget override used for?  
An override supports day to day maintenance and operation expenditures of a school district such as utilities, paper and other supplies, salary and benefits of employees, and miscellaneous expenditures not of a capital nature.

How long do override funds last?  
An override lasts for seven years. If not renewed, the amount decreases by one-third in the sixth year and two-thirds in the seventh year. In year eight, it expires. In order to fully maintain the continuity of an override, an election must be held every five years. Even though continuation overrides are not new taxes, per state law, they must be renewed through an election to continue for another seven years.

Why does a school district ask for voter approval to increase its operating budget?

An override is a direct way for a local community to help provide funding for local schools. Increasing the operating budget allows a school district to provide a higher quality education, offer programs and services to better meet the needs of students, and adequately prepare children to be successful contributing members of the community. 

What is the difference between a Budge Override and a Bond election?
A budget override allows school districts to increase their Maintenance and Operations budget if the voters of the district approve by election. An override supports day to day maintenance and operation expenditures such as utilities, paper and other supplies, salary and benefits of employees, and miscellaneous expenditures not of a capital nature. Overrides cannot be used for Bond projects. 
Bonds are a debt instrument, approved by the voters, which are secured by a school district and paid back over time using tax dollars. Bonds allow school districts to fund capital projects such as school buses, facility construction, renovations and repairs, computers, security systems. Bonds cannot be used for M&O expenses.  

Where does the funding for budget overrides come from?
Overrides are entirely funded by the levy of taxes on the secondary assessed value of property located within the District.