Sunday, August 01, 1999

School levies now up to voters

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        On Tuesday, voters in the Mount Healthy and Princeton school districts will decide whether to renew or install proposed tax levies to fund their district's needs.

        In May, the Princeton school board approved a 3.95-mill levy for the Aug. 3 ballot, saying that voters must pass a levy this year to avoid budget cuts in the 2000-01 school year.

        This will be the third attempt the district has made in less than a year to get a levy approved. In November, voters defeated a 6.5-mill levy that was to raise about $10 million annually to meet expenses. When the levy failed the board voted to cut $4 million from the 1999-2000 budget.

        In February, the board placed a 4.95-mill tax levy on the May ballot for general oper ating expenses.

        However, the board took the proposed tax off the ballot a month later after residents said May was not the time to burden taxpayers.

        Now, though, it seems this levy is getting some support from residents in the Princeton district.

        In a July 20 letter to Glendale voters, Mayor Thomas Todd stated Princeton “has made many changes with tightening the budget and reduction in expenditures so that we feel the school district is now worthy of our support.

        “We have assurance from Dr. Dennis Peterson, superintendent, that he and the school board support the current placement and operation of Glendale school unless adequate funding becomes unavailable to continue the current overall configuration of schools in the district,” the letter continued.

        “Glendale has had public education ... for over 140 years. ... A positive vote will make it continue to happen.”

        For those served by Mount Healthy City School District, this election will decide whether to renew an existing 1.89-mill levy that generates $500,000 annually to pay for operating expenses.

        On Saturday, Superintendent Dave Horine set up an office inside Michel Tire at Hamilton Avenue and Adams Road for two hours to field questions about the proposed levy.

        He has said a renewal is “vital to (the district's) continuing success.”


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