Miami Valley voters will decide on a slew of tax levies for schools Tuesday. Across the Miami Valley, opponents of levies, especially new or additional ones, are saying they can’t take on extra property taxes. On the flip side, many school districts say they’ll have to cut programs, limit busing, or lay off staff to make slimmed-down budgets work. Read about some of the issues here.
Just a few blocks from the Centerville Board of Education office, neighbors weigh in on opposite sides of the school levy debate.
Credit WYSO/Lewis Wallace
Six Montgomery County school districts have new tax levies on the ballot this November, some for the third, fourth or fifth time. But many homeowners oppose any new taxes, citing losses in property values and the overall post-recession fiscal squeeze among reasons to vote against new levies.
The Greene in Beavercreek. Like many city school districts, Beavercreek depends on property tax levies for a significant portion of school funding.
As we move towards election day Nov. 5, the Beavercreek City School District is among those pleading with voters for new levy funding. The district has had four recent levies defeated at the ballot box, and is now returning with a fifth, reduced levy of 6.3 mills. The emergency levy would cost property owners about $18 a month per $100,000 of appraised property value.
School levies are among the biggest issues on the ballot in the upcoming November 5, 2013 election. Ohio schools depend on these levies as an essential funding stream, and many are facing new or additional levies that can be difficult to pass.
Money for Ohio’s public schools comes from three sources: federal funds, state funds, and local tax levies.
“Levies then become the source really of their chief operating funds,” explains Mark Smith of Cedarville University. “For most cases those local schools are very dependent upon those local property taxes.”
A report praises Ohio for having more environmentally-friendly school projects under way than any other state.
The nonprofit U.S. Green Building Council says the state has 315 school projects registered and certified under the council's LEED program. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and provides a set of international standards for energy-efficient and environmentally friendly methods and materials.