Ahner, Chapman make the grade

The area’s youngest candidate secured the most votes Tuesday in the Perkins school board election.
Alissa Widman Neese
Nov 6, 2013

 

Newcomer Michael Ahner, a 2008 Perkins High graduate, received an overwhelming 36 percent of the district’s votes, landing one of two available board seats, according to unofficial election results.

Ahner, 23, recently returned to the area after graduating from the Ohio State University with a degree in mechanical engineering. He said he hopes to offer a fresh perspective to the board.

For a listing of all the election results click HERE

“I hope to bring the community back together,” he said. “I look forward to working with the current board members and doing the right thing for Perkins Schools: moving forward as a district.”

Nine-year board member Terry Chapman will retain his seat for another four years. He received about 24 percent of the votes.

At a Register-sponsored candidate debate at Chet and Matt’s Pizza in October, Chapman and Ahner appeared split on many issues, especially concerning district finances.

Watch the debate in the player below

Chapman said he supports the current board’s decision to move “inside millage” — funding used for day-to-day operations — into a separate account for building improvements.

The polarizing decision has effectively segmented the Perkins Schools community, as it has prompted the district to repeatedly pursue tax levies to replace the funds.

Voters again overwhelmingly rejected a tax levy Tuesday, with about 61 percent of Perkins Township residents voting against it. The district’s reserve cash is set to be depleted to a mere $23,500 by the end of the current school year. Its budget is about $21 million per year.

At the debate, Ahner said he is against the millage move and proposed returning the 5.2 mills of funds back into the operating budget. A smaller levy, possibly 2 mills, would help the district get by in the short term, so it could then address its building issues later with another levy, he said.

When contacted Tuesday, Ahner said he hasn’t yet determined what his key goals will be when he takes his seat in January.

Each candidate elected will serve a four-year term on the board.

Comments

Mommabear713

Good luck young man. I hope you remember all that you stand for, and keep it in mind when helping to make decisions for our students.

True Blue

Congrats to Mr. Ahner! Why would the voters re-elect Terry Chapman? He's part of the problem. One new face on the board isn't going to change anything. Look for more spent money on levies and the new campus we'll all be asked to pay for in the future. Levy fails and the the voters re-elect the problem Can any of you voters explain your actions?? Good Luck Mr. Ahner, you'll need it!

Imataloss

Well, because while many of the core no voters are anti-Gunner/board, many of the rest of the no voters just cannot afford the levy. They feel the board has managed the best they can and hold no grudges. They just cannot give any more.

Good 2 B Me

Congratulations and good luck Mr. Ahner. Remember where you come from and how you got there. Make us proud!

Tell it how it is.

I just found it impossible to vote for a guy like J. I mean his house is three shades of Green. There is no personal pride there. I love Perkins and don't want to see it run by a guy like that.

fifteenthgreen

Again, that "Perkins is better" mentality we've been talking about. It's got to stop, Tell it.

Good luck, Mr. Ahner and like Good 2 said, don't forget how you got there and what you stand for! Most of all, communicate!

samiam

Perhaps Mr Franklin has a finite amount of money to spend each year, much like a school district but on a smaller scale, and painting his house wasn't at the top of his list of priorities regarding where best to spend his dollars. Besides, and I'm not saying this is what he is thinking, improving one's house would up the taxes.

Brick Hamland

How can he forget what he stands for? "When contacted Tuesday, Ahner said he hasn’t yet determined what his key goals will be when he takes his seat in January."

fifteenthgreen

Our government is still trying to figure it out daily, Brick. If Ahner can be a voice or catalyst to the entire community as he learns...great! Something new had to happen and still does need to happen. A 2-1 swing will not be easy unless extreme changes are made to sway and change the public opinion.

Brick Hamland

5th, I appreciate your comments. I have a hard time believing that someone without a solid plan or an understanding of school funding is going to convince anyone to change anything. I watched the debtate and he couldn't answer a majority of the questions. I wish him luck, my kids have a lot at risk as they come up through the school. A few more failed levies and more cut programs and teachers then St. Mary's will be a better choice to educate your children.

Erie County Resident

Gratz to Mr. Ahner. Don't cave into the OJT you'll get from the we'll do what we want clowns on the present BOE.
To bad we still have Citizens Bank "Chapstick" on the board.

And a NO vote from me will continue until that lying POS Gunner is gone.
Gee I thought (in his words) he was retiring after his contract expired!
So why apply to other school systems Gunner? Not done trying to build your empire???