OTTAWA — Voters in the Ottawa-Glandorf Local School District will consider a one-percent continuing income tax levy on May 8.
“We have not asked for any additional dollars since 1992, and we’ve had increased costs, but we have not had any increases in funding to match that,” said Ottawa-Glandorf Superintendent Don Horstman.
Once it’s fully collected — and it takes 18 months to get to a full collection — the tax is estimated to bring in roughly $2.5 million.
Any money raised would go towards day-to-day operations of the district.
“Anything that would be able to be used out of our general fund, supplies, materials, salaries, benefits, anything needed to run the school on a day-to-day basis,” said Horstman.
Cuts have also been made leading up to this decision to go for the tax levy May 8.
“We watch our staffing very carefully all of the time. In the last four years, we have eliminated elementary Art. We’ve had teachers at the high school retire, whom we haven’t replaced. Wherever we can, we’re cutting things,” he said.
Passage of the income tax is important to the long-term growth of the district.
“Our five-year plan does not look good at all without this. If we do not pass this, we will run out of money within three years,” he noted.
If the levy fails on May 8, the district estimates it will have minus-$879,187 in its general fund at the end of the 2019-20 school year. By the end of the 2021-22 school year, the district’s balance would be minus-$5.9 million.
If the levy passes, the district would have a general fund balance of $1.047 million in the fifth year of projections
The final chance for people to learn more about the upcoming levy is at 7 p.m. April 25 in the Glandorf Elementary school cafeteria.
St. Marys voters to consider income tax
In the St. Marys City Schools district, voters will consider an additional 5-year, 1.5% tax on earned income.
“The cost of education continues to rise. St. Marys City Schools hasn’t asked for new operating levy monies since 2004, and during that time, they’ve made cuts. In 2014, the state had given a little increase. Basically, the revenues remain flat for the district, but the expenditures keep going on the increase so right now our expenditures have been exceeding our revenue for the last few years. By 2020, the state will not be able to certify our five-year forecast,” said interim St. Marys Superintendent Howard Overman.
“The earned income, what makes it a little more appealing is it’s more generous as far to our agricultural farmers, to the business person and also to our retirees, our senior citizens. An earned income tax does not tax pensions, 401K’s, Social Security, things like that,” said Overman.
It’s estimated that $5.6 million will be raised annually.
A meeting will be held April 24 to discuss the need for the levy. It starts at 6:30 p.m. in the High School-Middle School Auditorium.
Other levies to be considered May 8
Bath Local Schools is considering renewal of a 11.47-mill property tax levy.
Waynesfield-Goshen school district voters will be considering the renewal of a 5-year 4.9-mill permanent improvement levy.
Jackson Center schools are also looking to renew their .5-percent income tax levy on a continuing basis.
Likewise, Indian Lake schools will ask voter approval for a renewal of a 5-year 6.85-mill levy.
Delphos voters will be asked to approve the renewal of a .6 mill operating levy for the Delphos Public Library.
Ohio High Point Joint Vocational School is asking for passage of an additional .6 mill permanent improvement tax.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.