LIMA — It was a split vote for levies in the Shawnee school district.
Voters rejected a 10-year 4.482 mill additional tax levy by a vote of 3,978 to 3,385 but voters did approve a 4.113 renewal levy by a vote of 4,682 to 2,702.
“I’m excited that the renewal passed, and easily. I’m disappointed, of course. A lot of people put a lot of good hard work into the effort of getting our information out. Being a former government teacher, I believe in our process and we have to do a better job of educating our public,” said Superintendent James Kanable.
The next step is up to the Shawnee school board.
“We’ll go back and take a look at the financial picture. We heard from the voters and will have to decide where to go from here. We’re still deficit spending — that won’t change, despite the vote. So now we have to find other ways or perhaps even come back to the voters at a later time,” said Mike Carpenter, board president.
In exit polls, voters were supportive of the the school.
“My daughter is in band, and I know although they do fundraising that they can still use a lot of help with new instruments, their uniforms and I just felt like if the band is suffering then I’m sure other aspects are, as well, and I do know that choir was really looking for funding, and I would hate to see any of the arts suffer,” said Valerie Kutka.
“We just actually moved to this area, and our kids are just starting in the school district. My husband’s been a high school math teacher at Shawnee going on 18 years, so we definitely want to put money into our schools and support them,” said Kristi Lora.
“I voted for the levy because I think education is very important for our kids,” said Debbie Marshall.
Other issues on the ballot that passed included a 5-year 1 mill renewal levy for Elida schools. That issue passed 4,017 to 2,957.
“We’re pretty happy with the results, 58-42 percent. I think it just shows the community is behind what we’re doing right now, behind the school and we’re very thankful and appreciative of the support the community has given us now,” said Elida Superintendent Joel Mengerink.
Also passing was a 5-year, 3.482 mill renewal levy for Perry schools. That levy passed 712 to 469.
“We’re ecstatic with our community continued support for our renewal levy. Very excited for our community to be able to keep furthering the education of our students out in Perry. We’re very grateful to our levy committee, led by Mark and Linda Hoersten. They did a fantastic job for us”, said Perry Superintendent Alison Van Gorder.
A 5-year, 0.75 mill renewal levy for fire and emergency services for Jackson Township passed 1,034 to 312.
A 5-year, 0.5 mill renewal levy for fire and emergency services for Perry Township also passed 784 to 392.
A 5-year, 2.5 mill renewal levy for current operating expenses for the Village of Cairo was also approved 118 to 53.
Voters also approved liquor licenses for Fat Jack’s on North West Street for the Sunday sales of wine and mixed beverages.
Voters approved liquor licenses for Sportscasters Bar and Patio on Findlay Road. They were also seeking Sunday sales of wine and mixed beverages.
A total of 35,698 ballots were cast in Allen County, representing just over 51 percent of registered voters.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.