Voters overwhelmingly approve Hawkeye levy renewal - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Voters overwhelmingly approve Hawkeye levy renewal

Voters overwhelmingly approve Hawkeye levy renewal

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Voters Tuesday overwhelmingly approved a renewal of the Hawkeye Community College maintenance and equipment levy.

Final results showed the 'Yes' vote totaled 8,119, while 2,635 rejected the renewal.

The levy renewal means no tax property tax increase for voters regarding the levy.

 The vote was seen as being the difference between finding a new job and not finding one for many of the John Deere workers laid off this spring.

 Hawkeye Community College says it's seeing a steady enrollment of students who have been laid off and are looking for new training.
 That training requires the latest technology and equipment, which would be provided by the proposed levy renewal on Tuesday's ballot.

Last Spring Diana Staver and Sam Nyland found themselves out of a job and wondering what to do next.
"Oh its a pit in your stomach, you don't know what you want to do. I didn't know where I wanted to go or what exactly I wanted to do," said Diana Staver, former John Deere employee.
"Not at all. I had no idea. I went home and talked to my family about it," said Sam Nyland, also a former John Deere employee.

Now they are taking courses at Hawkeye Community College to learn new skills. 
For students, like Sam and Diana, its having this hands on education with the latest technology that they hope will get them back in the workforce.

"Some of the equipment is older, some of it is newer. I mean if we could get newer equipment it would be great," said Staver.

Hawkeye says the continued progress of industries requires them to constantly be updating classroom equipment both in their advanced manufacturing degrees and others like their nursing program.
"And so in order for us to stay up to date, we use these levy funds to make sure our equipment replicates whats in the work force, so students have that opportunity," said Jane Bradley, Vice President of Academic Affairs at Hawkeye.

The levy on the ballot that pays for this wasn't new. It's from 2007 and, the vote decided whether to renewal the levy.

The levy means home owners pay $3.34 per year for the next ten years.

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