It looks to me like FFSD has run up against the top of its tax levying ability as a result of falling real estate values.
Voters can vote to allow the levy increase, which will allow the district to hopefully maintain the status quo, or they can vote no, and there will likely need to be some additional cuts.
If they vote yes, I am inclined to believe that they may be more likely to entice transfers from Riverview Gardens and Normandy. If those are largely poorly performing students, that could put the district's accreditation status in jeopardy. If they lose that status, under the new law SB125, the state board can take immediate action to remove the board and administration.
If they vote no, that may force the district to curtail transfers, which could end up saving it from related problems, even though it is operating with lower income.
Taxpayers should keep in mind that the state has zeroed in on these north county districts with the new law for a reason. The St Louis area provides about 40 percent of the state's tax income, and of that a large part comes from the companies in the north county area.
The area around the airport, North Park, the recently cleared Ford plant and Hazelwood represent the state's best locations for attracting new businesses--excellent highway, rail, and air transportation, abundant water and electricity, a skilled workforce, etc.
It is not lost on the state powers, and existing and potential large businesses that the local school districts basically suck, and that high skilled workers are consequently forced to commute long distances to access quality schools.
If this situation is not changed by the locals, and soon, the state will step in and do it for them. This will likely involve consolidation and long term state control or at least close supervision. It will also likely involve charter and magnet academy type programs, shades of what is going on in the St Louis Pub Schools.
The time to take action is at hand.