Greenon Local Schools residents passed a $36 million bond issue Tuesday night to build a new pre-k through 12th grade school for the district, according to final, unofficial results.
But Clark-Shawnee residents again rejected a $37.2 million bond issue — this time by just more than 100 votes, according to the Clark County Board of Elections.
Greenon Superintendent Brad Silvus said the district’s winning results can be credited to the hard work of volunteers and residents who made their way out to community forums throughout last summer and fall.
“We appreciate all our volunteers have done and the community and the input they had in this process and we are excited to continue,” he said. “It is awesome. It is an exciting time for Greenon Local Schools.”
The Greenon bond issue is for 6.98 mills, which will cost a taxpayer who owns a $100,000 property in the school district a little more than $20 a month. For seniors with a homestead exemption, the added cost will be less. The total cost of the project will be $54 million, with the state picking up $18 million through the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission.
Greenon parent Malissa Laugle said she voted yes on the bond issue Tuesday.
“It is important to me that we have the new buildings for our kids,” she said. “When you look at the cost it makes sense financially.”
She said the district spends too much money on repairs that could be better spent on education initiatives. School officials said the district spends thousands of dollars a year in repairs.
“The high school is falling apart of the seams,” she said. “Indian Valley, there are things that are very worn down. You go in there and you look a the ceiling or pipes. I wouldn’t want to go there.”
The same day Possum School was released early due to a gas leak in the building voters in the district voted down a $37.2 million bond issue Tuesday. If it had passed, the district planned to build a new elementary school across the street from Shawnee High School and renovate the high school. Possum, Reid and Rockway elementary schools would have been closed.
“We know the need still exists,” Morris said. “We still have the offer of 30 percent from the state and it’s guaranteed only through August. Our elementary buildings are the average of of 92 years old.”
An approval from voters would have cost an owner of a of $100,000 property more than $15 a month.
The exact same bond issue failed by less than 200 votes in November.
Clark-Shawnee Parent Scott Woodruff said he voted for the levy on Tuesday. He said there is a huge need for new schools in the district
“I cannot believe anyone can go into our district and not jump up and down and demand new schools,” he said.
However, some residents said they didn’t agree.
Resident Alan Brown, who has a son in the high school now, said previously the district needs to be more careful with its money and didn’t feel that district residents were in good enough financial shape to pass the bond issue.
Morris said the board will have to decide if it wants to go back to the ballot box. He said he still believes the community cares about their school district.
“Tax issues are difficult to pass,” he said. “We know that we have a community that values its students and its schools. And we look forward to working with all the community to determine a path forward.”
There is a special board meeting scheduled at the Clark-Shawnee Administration offices at 7 a.m. Thursday.
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