Perkins levy plan has online forums buzzing|But few want their names attached to their comments

PERKINS TWP. The Perkins community has 7.9 mills worth of opinions about a proposed school levy. Not
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010

 

PERKINS TWP.

The Perkins community has 7.9 mills worth of opinions about a proposed school levy.

Not many had good things to say about the levy that hasn't officially been placed on the August ballot.

The very idea of the district going to the taxpayers for more money has community members buzzing on the Register's online message forum.

The Register forum logged 229 comments by 10 p.m. Thursday. All debated Tuesday night's Perkins School Board meeting during which school officials said they plan to ask voters in August to pony up some general operating funds for the troubled school district.

If something doesn't give financially, school officials say the district will be in debt by fiscal year 2009 and the state could take over district operations.

The proposed levy equates to an additional 4 mills of taxation, which would bring in another $1.4 million for the district.

Tax payers who have a $100,000 home will pay a total of $122.61 for the replacement levy if it passes.

It is a replacement levy that restores a previously approved levy to its original effectiveness. Over time, effective millage decreases.

The proposed levy comes on the tail end of teacher arbitration and three previously failed levies.

Few parents and community members seemed willing to go on the record this week with their opinion. Many declined, saying they feared that being a naysayer about the proposed levy could make their children targets within the district.

Those that did go on the record had mixed opinions.

Jeff Goretzki, a parent picking up his child Thursday at Briar Middle School, said he thinks the district is very good, but isn't sure if he can vote in favor of a levy.

"Taxes continue to go up and incomes aren't changing a lot," he said. "I'm not sure how I'll vote yet. It depends on the size of the levy, what the plans are for it and the financial position of the school."

Parent Lisa Benkey has her mind made up. She will vote for the levy because she feels it is needed.

"It's only going to get more expensive the longer we wait," she said.

Here's a sampling of what people said on the Register forum:

* A Sad State... wrote at 10:16 p.m. Wednesday: "After reading most of these posts, I doubt the levy will pass. And, while I sympathize with the school's financial dilemma, I can't say I'm really surprised by it. Tensions were already high and then came the strike and some very bad behavior by a few teachers that ruined any chances of gaining public support for their situation. The losers - I hope the students don't suffer. Time to learn from our mistakes, get rid of the poison and try to heal so we can move forward."

* Grow Up wrote at 4:14 p.m. Wednesday: "Perkins teachers and Perkins residents are all cry babies. If you want something better, you better move. Obviously, this situation is not going to get any better for either side. As long as you have the attitude that you have, everyone involved is going to lose."

* pirate parent wrote at 5:22 p.m. Wednesday: "Perkins teachers have been wonderful to my children, but I think the teachers have to understand that many people in Perkins Township have had to take pay cuts in their jobs, and if they have children in sports they also have to pay to play. Some of us in Perkins simply do not have the money to have our taxes raised to help fund the schools. I pray that this levy does not pass."

* Ear Hair wrote at 6:03 p.m. Wednesday "I will be voting no. I can't afford to vote yes."

* Perkins Resident wrote at 7:13 p.m. Wednesday: "A suggestion and some reality: First, if you have listed angry comments on this or another site and you haven't also sent the same angry comments to our representatives in Columbus, you are doing yourself and the community a disservice. Those people have let this educational issue go unaddressed for over twelve years. So, regardless of your opinion, send an e-mail to Rep. Redfern and Senator Gardner and tell them to show some leadership on this. If the schools could just continue to collect the money at the level that was previously voted on, we probably wouldn't be looking at this situation now."

PULLOUT:

Will you vote yes or no for the new Perkins school levy?

I will vote yes because I'm pleased with how the school system is run: 5 percent, 11 votes

I will vote yes because it's all about the kids: 16 percent, 37 votes

I will vote no because of the superintendent: 22 percent, 52 votes

I will vote no because the teachers are overpaid: 27 percent, 63 votes

I will vote no because of the strike: 13 percent, 31 votes

I will vote no because I'm a tightwad: 16 percent, 38 votes

(Sandusky Register poll results as of 10 p.m. Thursday)