Springfield votes to place 7.9 mill levy on August ballot - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Springfield votes to place 7.9 mill levy on August ballot

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SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Springfield Local Schools leaders say they need a levy to pass or they'll be forced to make millions of dollars worth of cuts.

Those cuts range from elimination of jobs, bussing and even band.

The district's school board voted to place a 7.9 mill levy on the August ballot on Wednesday, April 30.

Even if that large levy passes, the district will be forced to trip more than $1 million from its budget. The school board had considered asking voters for even more money, but settled on 7.9 mills.

"I really believe whole heartedly that this is the right decision by the board for the future of the students," said Superintendent Kathryn Hott.

The 7.9mill permanent levy would generate just over $5 million in funding for the district each year. It would cost the owner of a $100,000 house $276 a year.

"We'd always have the opportunity to reduce the millage should some resolution in state funding be reached; we could always take it back. But to keep coming back and doing levies and levies, to keep renewing this is not responsible either on our part," said Hott.

Hott says a loss in revenue from the state, losses in property values and unfunded state mandates are to blame for the district's financial woes. Some residents disagree and say they won't support the levy.

"I'm for the kids, believe me, I'm for the kids, but we're frozen. There's no money," said Springfield Township resident Gary Knapp. "I don't have the money to support it, absolutely."

"I feel there's a lot of waste here. I think it's time they tighten their belts like they tell us seniors to do," said Jessie Geis. "I will be voting no and I will influence anyone I can to vote no."

To stabilize the budget, the board has to make $1.1 million in cuts no matter what. Those cuts will be to areas like 5th grade band. There will also be a number of staff reductions from teachers to library clerks.

The levy, if passes, it will cover operating costs, which includes everything from staffing to curriculum. If it fails - "We'll be losing additional personnel and it will unfortunately have to impact transportation. There are some things that are significant should we not be able to pass it in August, prior to starting the 14-15 school year," said Hott.

If the August levy does fail, the board will have an opportunity to place a levy on the November ballot. The district has already place a renewal levy on that ballot.

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