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Cuyahoga Falls School Officials Petition for 2013 Levy

Interim treasurer Jerry Zelenka and Superintendent Dr. Todd Nichols say the new revenue could go toward equipping classrooms with new technology and advanced digital tools.

Interim treasurer Jerry Zelenka has but one request for the to consider after his contract expires on June 30—place a new levy on the ballot.

During Monday’s regular meeting, Zelenka addressed the board saying it should put at least a 1-mill permanent improvements levy in front of voters by next March.

At one mill, the five-year levy would raise about $730,000 per year for the school district and cost taxpayers about $96 for every 100,000 in property valuation.

However, Zelenka stressed, the money can’t go to employee raises, benefits or wage step increases; it can only pay for building and grounds improvements, technology, buses or any “capital asset that will last more than five years.”

As it stands, the district gets a large share of its permanent improvements money from rental charges of school facilities, but the annual revenue gained is “miniscule” versus what can be generated by a levy, said Superintendent Dr. Todd Nichols.

According to Zelenka, the district receives about $400,000 annually in permanent improvement money.

The extra $300,000-plus in revenue generated from a new levy could go directly toward equipping classrooms with 21st century technology, he said. That is, smart boards, computers, laptops, tablets and so on.

“Dr. Nichols has some really good ideas for this district for the future and really has a good vision for the district of where it can go and where he’d like to take it, but what you’re lacking – if I can say this – what you’re lacking is the funds to do that with,” said Zelenka.

Would you pay for a new levy if the funds went directly to students and the classroom? Tell us in the comments.

It's a Breeze Travel June 13, 2012 at 10:48 PM
I would support this. The buildings need maintenance no matter what. Selling off buildings and other assets is not necessarily the answer, because when we need those properties in the future everyone will be whining about why we need to find land and put a building on it we will be growing again, and then over crowding will be an issue. As we all know money doesn't grow on trees. Our children deserve safe buildings that everything functions properly. Some of these improvements could be money saving we do not always know what the school officials have in mind. Upgrading technology and they could be putting solar panels on the building roofs to provide power...great improvement saves money down the road, maybe even makes money down the road.
Adam C. Miller June 13, 2012 at 11:03 PM
What a JOKE!
Thomas Sullivan June 14, 2012 at 01:10 AM
Breeze I Do agree with a small part of your statement but at one time it was not uncommon to have a family of four or even as many as nine. During that time the school system grew to acomadate this. Now that many households consist of two or possibly three kids this space is no longer needed. Unless for some reason birth control is banned family's grow back to the sizes there were in the 50's and 60's there is no need to mow the grass an pay the insurance on empty space.
Earl Elevant June 14, 2012 at 06:22 AM
Jesus. No more levies. With a new superintendent every couple years, we're going to all be on the poor farm trying to satisfy each one's "vision." Don't ask. We don't have anything more to give. Make do with what we already give you and save some of that for your vision.
Roger June 15, 2012 at 02:55 AM
Solution: Mayor Don and his Administration should buy all the CF School District Buildings and Land at an inflated price, then give it back to the schools for nothing. Then, the CFSD would have big bucks on hand for improvements and technology updates, and would not need another levy. The City would benefit by investing in the future of the Schools, thereby investing in the City and consequently increasing the property value of our homes! Also, the CFSD wouldn't need another levy until they hit us with the plan to tear down the High School and Middle Schools, and build a new multi-building school campus and stadium where Bolich now stands, and just a short hike from Portage Crossing.

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