Bill Ruane column: Keep St. Marys pride alive

Bill Ruane - Guest Spot

The 2018-2019 school year has been filled with exciting accomplishments for the students of St. Marys City Schools. Consider:

• On the state report card, the District ranked No.1 out of the 10 most similar districts on the performance index, which measures student achievement.

• The boys and girls bowling teams and the girls powerlifting club all recently won state championships.

• Our St. Marys FFA chapter mailed 80 pail mail buckets to local service men and women stationed overseas and hosted a day of hands-on learning for our kindergarten students.

• Both the symphonic band and symphonic choir recently received “1” “Superior” ratings at the district competition.

These accomplishments highlight just a few of the opportunities that St. Marys City Schools is proud to offer the students of our community in academics, arts and athletics.

As you probably know, St. Marys City Schools is asking voters to renew a 5-year, 5.92 mill, emergency operating levy on May 7. The $1.8 million generated annually by the renewal of this levy plays an important role in the financial stability of our school district. It will allow us to continue to offer the students of St. Marys a range of opportunities in the classroom, in the auditorium, and on the field. This renewal levy is not new or additional money for the district; instead, it is a renewal of the $1.8 million levy that was originally passed 15 years ago.

Many members of our community currently benefit from Ohio’s Homestead Rollback. In 2013, under Gov. John Kasich, the state eliminated the Homestead Rollback on all “new” levies. However, it stays in place on emergency levies that are renewed. Ohio’s Homestead Rollback reduces the taxes levied against residential property by 10 to 12.5 percent, thus reducing the property tax paid by the homeowner. The state of Ohio then reimburses the school district for this amount.

If the current emergency operating levy is not renewed, the district and the citizens of St. Marys will lose this rollback money from the state with no chance to get it back. Renewing the 5-year, 5.92 mill, emergency operating levy on May 7 locks in the Homestead Rollback, which reduces the cost of the levy by 10 to 12.5 percent for most homeowners.

St. Marys City Schools has a strong history of offering students a variety of opportunities and programming options. This is a tradition that we hope we can continue for many, many years to come. If you have any questions about the upcoming levy, please contact me or Treasurer Robin Laman at 419-394-4312.

Bill Ruane

Guest Spot

Bill Ruane is the superintendent of St. Marys City Schools

Bill Ruane is the superintendent of St. Marys City Schools

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