Wood County District Public Library

Wood County District Public Library, downtown Bowling Green.  

The Wood County District Public Library would also be affected by a successful petition effort to leave Bowling Green City Schools.

Library Director Michael Penrod addressed the topic at the library board of trustees meeting on Thursday.

“We are the only political subdivision that follows the lines of another political subdivision,” Penrod said.

“If an area leaves Bowling Green school district to go to Otsego or Elmwood, they will stop paying for the library’s operating levy,” Penrod said.

“Also like the schools have said, that if an area leaves Bowling Green Schools and goes to another, they will still continue to pay for the bond issues, because bond issues are tied to a parcel. I confirmed that that is the case from the library point of view, with the auditor. So the library’s bond issue goes through 2026, so those parcels would still pay for the library bond issue,” Penrod said.

The potential impact on the library levy would be about a 3% drop, or approximately $32,000.

“If there are any changes in school boundaries, there would be corresponding changes in library boundaries,” Penrod said. “I just want you to be aware, in case you know of anyone that’s in the area, or is one of the petitioners, they will pay more for a library levy and they will still pay for the library bond and that has nothing to do with which school district charges more.”

The Wood County Prosecutor’s Office is investigating whether or not the library has any legal standing related to the issue. The library is a separate independent political subdivision that does have property value implications.

“They probably won’t see much change in the way of service, because we serve everyone who is an Ohio resident. Part of our funding comes from the State of Ohio,” Penrod said. “Our local operating levy is paid for by the property owners in the district, so those boundaries would change.”

State Sen. Theresa Gavarone, R-Bowling Green, and State Rep. Haraz Ghanbari, R-Perrysburg, have been notified by library trustees of the potential implications.

State lawmakers are considering whether to repeal the territory transfer law. Senate Bill 89 revises the Educational Choice Scholarship (EdChoice) Program, dissolves the three academic distress commissions and repeals the school district territory transfer law from the state budget bill.

Under Senate Bill 89, the repeal would not affect ongoing school territory transfers.

According to recently released figures the petitions would also be paying more to the new school district, should the petitioners leave the district. Patrick Henry school district taxpayers pay 55% more in taxes than those in Bowling Green. McComb pays 31% more, Elmwood 20% more, Otsego 18% and Eastwood 13% more.

“I just want everybody to be aware, that libraries will be implicated if there is a change,” Penrod said.