Marietta Voters To Decide Two School Levy Renewals

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Voters in the Marietta City School District have two tax issues on the March 6th primary ballot.

Superintendent Harry Flemming says one is for current expenses.

“Five years ago, the district was successful in passing the current expense levy.  It was only for five years at the time and so it is up for renewal. So without this vote, that source of revenue would go away and it represents about 13 percent of our general fund. So, you can imagine that’s a serious amount of money for us,” said Flemming.

The levy generates about $3.2 million dollars a year.

The second tax proposal is for permanent improvements.

“That levy was originally passed in 1997, and it was renewed in 2002 and it was renewed again in 2007. So this is the third renewal from the original passage of that levy.  It has been the same amount of money continuously from that original vote in 1997,” he said.

The current expenses levy is for 8.5 mills, while the permanent improvements levy is for 2.95 mills.

Flemming says money generate from the current expense levy goes to the general operation of the school district, paying the bills in a sense.  Permanent improvement levy money, he explains, can only be used for items such as textbooks or computers, renovations to the facilities or school bus purchases. The items purchased must have a life-expectancy of at least five years. 

Superintendent Fleming says there is no shortage of ideas for spending money for permanent improvements.

“We’ve been replacing fire alarm systems, we have several roofs in the future that need to be replaced, we have a schedule for window and door replacement that has been going on since we’ve had this funding stream, you know we’ve done a number of things,” said Flemming.  He adds the district has a PowerPoint presentation on its website detailing projects money has been used for in the past.  

Fleming says he's always a little nervous when going to the voters with a tax issue.

“It is different times, we’re never sitting back with a smug confidence about whether the voters will approve anything,” said Flemming. “We certainly hope the voters will trust us with their confidence again.”