|Elida to wait until November for emergency levy|
|Friday, May 02, 2014 8:37 PM|
BY CYNTHIA YAHNA
ELIDA — An emergency levy for Elida Local Schools will not appear on the August Special Election ballot.
Following a special meeting to hear comments from the public, the Elida Board of Education failed to pass by unanimous vote a resolution declaring their intent to put the measure on in August.
School Treasurer Joel Parker spoke to the more than 50 concerned district voters about why the levy is needed. He pointed out that other school districts spend in a high range of $15,924.48 to the lower end of $939 per pupil and Elida is in the low end on expenditure.
“We are just trying to maintain our bare-bones program and with the inflation of expenses such as health care, gas for the buses, utilities, etc., we have no control over,” Parker said. “It would be nice to grow instead of going backwards.”
A concerned citizen, who wanted to remain anonymous, stated “My husband and I are farmers and we just can’t take much more of being taxed. All the farmers talk amongst one another and they can’t take any more taxation. This has to be fair and it is not fair. We pay on the farm land, not just our home.”
Superintendent Don Diglia said he understands money is tight.
“I understand where you are coming from. We just don’t have any options; it is unfortunate that the way the state of Ohio funds education is by taxing on the landowners,” he said.
Jackson Burklow was adamant on not putting the levy on the August ballot.
“I spoke at the last board meeting and I am still concerned about one area that needs to be changed and that is to eliminate the August levy. Let the people speak their peace when they have more time and that would be the November election. Joel, you did a great job on telling us what the school needs but we need to know how and where you are going to spend the money; it needs to be itemized,” Burklow said. “You are asking us to give you a blank check. Mr. Cox, you need to go out and meet the public, let them know what your plans are for the school. If you run this in August, I will have no part of it.”
Another resident agreed with Burklow that it is not unreasonable to ask where the money would go and to have an understanding where the money would spent.
“I want you to go out of here knowing that we are one of the leanest schools in the state of Ohio,” Diglia stressed.
The next regular board meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on May 13.