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Critical School Levy Vote for Tecumseh Schools
NEW CARLISLE -- A critical time for the Tecumseh School District, as residents head to the poll for the tenth time.
Voters in New Carlisle will decide on a 12.37 mil levy Tuesday.
The last time a levy was passed in the district was in 1995, 18 years ago. School officials say if the levy doesn't pass this year, come 2015, the district could go into fiscal emergency.
According to the Ohio Department of Education, that's where a five member financial planning and supervision commission is appointed to assist the district.
Brad Martin, Superintendent for Tecumseh Schools, says the levy will generate $3.5 million dollars for the district. Martin says the district was in a deficit of $1.3 million dollars, but because of more than a million dollars in cuts made during the 2013 fiscal school year, the district finished in the black and will have a positive fund balance for 2014.
However, if the district continues in spending, a deficit is likely for the future.
"This past school year we made over $1 Million dollars in cuts," said Martin. "What we don't want to do is do a levy that only lasts one or two years because in another year or two I will be here asking for new money. Our last levy was passed in 1995."
However, some residents say they simply can't afford the extra taxes. Ethel Gibbs strongly voices her opposition to the levy with a huge sign in her front yard.
"It's a hardship for people to come up with 12.37. That would raise my property taxes 1,000 dollars per year," Gibbs explained.
1 million dollars in cuts have been made in Tecumseh schools within the last year. The cuts include six staff positions, busing at the high school levy and field trips. If voters don't pass this levy, cuts to extra curriculars like Physical Education, Music and ROTC are likely.
"My son's going to be a senior and luckily he's had the benefit of some of the programs, my daughter already graduated but I would hate to see kids just entering our district not have all the things that he had," said Stacy Anderson, a mother of two who supports the levy.
A huge concern for voters were why the levy millage was so high. Martin says the board is looking to cover expenses for the next five years. He says they are looking to limit their spending because they don't have a lot of revenue coming in.
If the levy passes, it will cost the owner of a $100,000 home an extra $379 dollars per year. The school board is meeting Tuesday night at 8:45 p.m. after the results come in to decide if it will put a levy on the November ballot.
We will have a crew at that meeting. Please stay with ABC 22 News and www.abc22now.com for updates.
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