Eastwood looking to renew levy (7-30-13) PDF Print E-mail
Written by MARIE THOMAS BAIRD, Sentinel Education Editor   
Tuesday, 30 July 2013 09:53
PEMBERVILLE - Eastwood School District has made it official: It will ask voters to support the renewal of its permanent improvement tax in November.
At Monday's board of education meeting, members unanimously approved placing the five-year, 2.0-mill tax issue on the Nov. 5 ballot.
Monday's vote was the second necessary to go forward with the levy.
It took community concern for the board to change its original plan to place the levy on for a continuing time, which meant it would have never expired.
The levy will not increase taxes paid by residents, who have been paying on this tax for about 20 years.
The tax expires this year.
It generates $265,000 annually for improvements to the district's infrastructure, such as bus repairs, carpet replacement, parking lot repair, building maintenance, and bus purchases.
The district is planning to purchase two buses this year. The newest bus in its fleet is from 2005.
Board members also heard a presentation from Fritz Wenzel of Wenzel Strategies, a public opinion research and media/communications consulting company based in Columbus.
The board continues to discuss ways to learn how the community stands on spending the $675,000 the district will receive annually from a tax abatement agreement with the Home Depot distribution center in Troy Township. The district is expected to receive $10,125,000 through January 2029 because of the agreement.
Wenzel described how his firm can conduct online, phone or text polling of district residents. He recommended an automated call to voters.
"It's not a ton of questions, it's not a ton on controversial questions," Wenzel said.
He said the survey could be developed, implemented and the results back to the board in one or two weeks.
He did not give a cost estimate for the service and the board did not take a vote on hiring Wenzel.
"We have to get information" from community members, said Superintendent Brent Welker. "What does the community think about a series of options" to spend the money, he stated.
He suggested a mailing to all community members telling them the dates of the upcoming phone survey.
"We need to educate the community on viable options," Welker stated.
Wenzel has worked as a political and media consultant for candidates for federal, state, and local offices. His firm had Ron Paul as a client in 2012 and is now involved with Rand Paul's political action committee.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 30 July 2013 10:05

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