Open letter to the Perkins Community

Letter from Perkins schools superintendent Jim Gunner.
Register
Oct 25, 2013

 

Perkins Community:

The Perkins School District levy is critical to providing ongoing quality education to the students of Perkins now and in the future.  This levy addresses both the day-to-day operational costs necessary to run the district as well as a solid plan to renovate and or build new facilities all at a modest cost.  Without the passage of this levy, additional reductions will make it more difficult for our students to have the education they need to be prepared for life in the 21st Century.

The Board and I recognize there is an active "No" voter campaign in the community.  But, what do they offer?  As I have listened to those who oppose the levy, they indicate three actions they would take:

1. Fire me as superintendent

2. Elect two new Board members to promote a change of direction

3. Move the "Inside Millage" back to general operations.

These actions fail to provide a long-term solution to the financial and facility problems the school district faces.  If the "No" voter campaign did their homework, they would discover their plan costs taxpayers significantly more, approximately 11.85 mils compared to the Board’s proposed 6.73 mils. Ask yourself as a taxpayer, do you want to pay almost twice as much to have a direct vote on the building of a new facility? Or do you want to trust Board members you elected who researched all available options over three years, involved four different community committees in the process and have proposed a long-term plan to solve both operations and facilities and keeps your school tax rate the lowest in Erie County?

This is what the “No” voters campaign will really cost you as Perkins taxpayers:

1.53 mils -   (6.73 – 5.2 = 1.53; Difference in Board's request from Inside Millage

1.78 mils  - (1.78 mils required to pay off the loan if “Inside Millage” is moved)

1.34 mils  - (1.34 mils to make up for tax collection starting in 2015 instead of 2014)

7.20 mils - (Bond Levy required to build the same cost building proposed by Board)

11.85 mils - needed to solve fiscal and facility problems as proposed by “No” voters

The "No" voter campaign indicates that we should just move the "Inside millage" back to general operations and then we could maybe pass a small 2 mil levy and everything would be all right.  This simply is untrue.  First, we cannot move the entire 5.2 mils of "Inside Millage" back to operations at the current time, unless we generate additional money to pay off the $3.5 million loan taken out by the Board.  Whether the "No" group agrees or not, the district has a $3.5 million loan that needs to be paid off over the next 4.5 years.  The annual payments of $770,000 are being paid from the "Inside Millage".  At least 1.78 mils of the "inside Millage" must be left in the Permanent Improvement fund for the next 4.5 years to pay off this debt. 

If a new Board of Education decides to move the “Inside Millage” back to the operations budget, this vote would take place no sooner than January 2014. Any “Inside Millage” moved back by this action would take effect with taxes collected in 2015, not 2014. In addition, if the November levy fails, the district would fail to receive an entire year's collection (Taxes collected during 2014) on the 6.73 mil levy, or another $2.9 million.  This $2.9 million dollar loss, by not passing a levy in November needs to be made up with either further reductions, or a larger future levy.  To raise an additional $2.9 million over five years would require an increase of 1.34 mils in any future levy.

But, let's not forget in this scenario, the "No" voters leave absolutely zero money for fixing our facilities. A traditional bond issue would require another vote of the community for at least a 7.2 mil initial bond rate to generate the same revenue the Board is suggesting by using the "inside millage".

So, really the "No" voters are asking the public to pass the equivalent of 11.85 mils to solve the operational and facility problems of the district. Is this the “Change” you want as a community? Is this the long-term planning you want for the district?

Secondly, the “No” voters would like to remove me as superintendent. And why do the “No” voters want to remove me?  Because I don' t live in the district, and a decision that required a vote, a 5-0 vote, by the members of the Board of Education who were elected to represent the voters, to move “Inside Millage” to fix facilities. These five elected members, after over three years of reviewing all fiscal options voted as your representatives to approve the proposed funding alternative of moving "Inside Millage" as a strategic move to fix facilities now and in the future. 

In the past five years, the district has had nine different Board of Education members.  All nine members, elected by the community, well respected diverse business and professional members of the community, have agreed that the current plan before the voters is the best plan to solve both operational and facility needs.  ALL of these Board members agree it is the least costly method for the taxpayers of Perkins.  Four different community committees as far back as Superintendents Buccierri and Rectenwald concluded the district facilities needed to be seriously addressed.  Three different independent construction firms have determined to repair our facilities is more costly than new buildings.  One of these firms ranked our high school as the school in the worst condition and in need of immediate replacement in the State of Ohio at the time.  The "No" voter campaign indicates we should form another community committee to examine the situation again.  After nine board members, eight years, four community committees, and three independent school construction firms have all concluded the same thing, what does another committee give us that we don't already know?

Don't be fooled by the "No" voters.  Consider some of the tactics used by the "No" voters during this campaign.

1. Smear the existing leadership of the district with half-truths, rumors, and innuendoes.

2. Spread half-truths through the "Blogs" where they refuse to identify who they are.

3. Threaten local business owners that display signs supporting the schools levy efforts.

4. Destroying and stealing pro-levy yard signs.

5. No real plan to solve the financial and facility issues facing the school and community.

Ultimately, it is up to the voters of Perkins to decide whom they will believe in this "War of Words".  The superintendent and Board have willing met with any individual or group to explain their position and have not changed their opinion in over three years on what is best for the school district and community.  Can the "No" voters explain how they are going to solve the complex financial problems of the school district?  I hope, as a voter in the Perkins community, you place the value of your children first and recognize that the duly elected Board of Education has done its best to solve very complex financial and facility problems at the best possible cost to you as taxpayers.

I hope you vote to support the Perkins Schools.

Jim Gunner, Superintendent

 

Comments

VOTENO

Vote yes.

gyrocartfluffikins

I believe the cornerstone on St. Mary's main building records the year of construction as 1909. Amazing that it's still structurally sound.

What hack built that (allegedly) dangerous brick monstrosity on Campbell Street?

Strong Schools ...

Please read why Perkins Local Schools needs your support so our students can have a safe and healthy learning environment.

Vote yes for the Students and check out this link!
http://perkinslevy.org/content/s...

fifteenthgreen

Strong Schools - I didn't think this was about a new school. What is your message and don't direct me to the site. Been there. What is it that you want? The last push for a yes vote stated it wasn't about a new school. Someone tell us why you want our money. Leadership please!!!

Bherrle

15th Green & All No Voters / Undecided Voters,

This election/levy, and the past levy attempts, have not been and are not about just one thing/issue. Should one want to narrow it down to one thing, I would call it the long term viability of the school district. This is made up of 3 main components (which I will break down further in a separate post):

1. Fiscal Responsibility for Today & Tomorrow - This applies to both the school district and the tax paying community.

2. Safe and Quality Schools - Our facilities. It is not about how old they are, it is about how they were built, their current condition, and how to address those issues both short and long term.

3. 21st Century Education for our students - The cirriculum, incorporating technology, and the learning environment.

fifteenthgreen

The exact indecisiveness that will continue to bring failure to future levy attempts. What will the money be used for? Save the canned message for the website. It's black and white! What do you want?

Bherrle

15th,

This is an operating levy. Therefore, the money generated by it will be used to fund day to day operations of the district.

Specifically, it would be used to restore the bulk of if not all of the positions that were cut as a result of the August Levy failure. Less than half of the positions were brought back part time between the August failure and the start of the school year.

It would also be used to return the play to pay participation fees back to their original levels, prior to the August levy failure, and to refund any amounts already paid over and above the pre-August fee level.

Now, that said, it all ties into the three points I made in the above post. It is not indecisive. It is complex.

Cowboy

Wow! You are really out of touch with reality! VOTING NO AGAIN! And I will continue to vote NO until the inside millage is moved back, Gunner is fired and a REASONABLE levy is put on the ballot!

Hawkeye

You keep saying for the students why? How is this supporting these students? If you are implying a new school.. well all of these students you are talking about will be gone by the time you are done building it, you really should be saying support the administration right? We still have loans to pay off and the more you borrow,those students you are trying to support will be paying for their kids and grandkids from this original levy And I bet we will need to pass another levy during that time because of maintenance and updates on the new buildings because we still will have no money due to the fact we borrowed more than we make. By the way (just like electronics) by the time the school is built it will be outdated :)

Brick Hamland

The current students are losing programs that can no longer be offered because of budget cuts. By way of a generic example, this is how it effects students: my son would have music class (or insert any class like health, spanish, gym, etc). in 4th grade (or insert any grade). Budgets cuts have eliminated the 4th grade music teacher and now my son doesn't have music in 4th grade. That is how it effects the students. Again, i am using 4th grade music as a generic example. Anyone that thinks the levy failing, this time, next time or anytime doesn't have an effect on the students should probably become more familiar with the facts available to them and how a school's operating budget works.

Hawkeye

I'm sorry but you cannot blame the taxpayer you have to look at how the money is being spent. We have proven support by the renewal in August. We do not like the direction the school board is heading.

Bherrle

Please visit www.perkinslevy.org for factual information, answers, and videos regarding this levy.

VoteYES

On comments stated before about teachers making paycuts or deducting money and donating to the district I find a little absurd. I have students in the school district and those teachers dedicate to their life to the students. I know they are there hours upon hours after school and take work home. How many of you can say that? Also, a lot of that hard earned salary goes right back into their classroom. So when you say teachers get raises I think you need to get your facts checked and talk with a teacher.

ldlong

I live in Olmsted Township, I live in a $220,000 house, I pay $6,100 in annual real estate taxes. Sister #1 lives in North Canton, she pays $5,200 while living in a $200,000. Sister #2 lives in Perkins, she pays $3,800 while living in a $250,000 house. For every $100,000 that's a rate of $2,772 for me, $2,600 for Sister 1, and $1,520 for Perkins. I pay $1,200+ MORE per $100,000 than PHS residents. We have another Levy up in November, we WILL also pass our Levy because our community realizes the economic and social benefit a strong school system creates.

It appears to me you want Premium Beer services for Busch Lite prices. Wake up and look at what other communities pay. Ask yourself, does Perkins want to be like Elyria and Lorain?

Brick Hamland

Thank you for the facts. Makes it clear that what the board is saying about Perkins being a low tax area is true. I assume the "no" voters will disregard this as a half truth

themomx6

Problem is the voters of Perkins have ZERO TRUST in the superintendent and BOE. We're basically tired of being threatened and manipulated, and we are not going to continue to just hand over money to people who have mismanaged it for years to begin with! That's just common sense. Trying to lay this "it's for the students" guilt trip on everyone just makes it worse. People still remember the teacher's strike and how much they were concerned about the students. I will repost MrGadfly's response. It explains very well why this levy will not pass:

MrGadfly
Mon, 10/28/2013 - 9:33am

I will continue to vote against this levy not for financial issues but to stop the loss of voting rights. With the present move of millage in place the citizens of Perkins Township will lose their rights to vote and oversee any building issues in regards to the school system. The present school board and superintendent have manipulated the present system to accomplish their goal.

Understand, if you approve this levy, you have given the school board and superintendent the right to do as they wish without public approval , forever.

Yes, that means they can add their fountain and you have no recourse.

As someone that looks at situations and their long term effects rather than this short term issue I ask that the voting public to vote against this and all issues that reduce our American rights to oversee our life.

I know some of you don't believe it is possible but the school board and superintendent could be worse and we have no final control of their actions.

For this reason alone, all Perkins citizens must vote "no" on this issue.

StayInformed

We said idlong. It's nice to hear such a realistic viewpoint on the situation from the outside. It appears that so many in the community do not realize how fortunate they are.

In the long run it will only cost more. Not only money but the loss of education and services will be drastic to our community.

fifteenthgreen

ldlong....Your income is different in the suburbs of Cleveland, Akron and Canton. CPAs make good money, ldlong! Also, you're paying way too much for Olmsted Falls. bherrle - His property is taxed but he pays his taxes out of his checkbook!

Bherrle

15th,

We are not taxed (school taxes) based on our income. We are based on the value of the property we own.

IDlong brings up a very valid point. It's called "Tax Effort." This is a measure of the a communities willingness to tax itself to support the school district. It is made of up current tax levels (millage), levy passages and failures, property value, and the income of the residents of each school district. 1 is an average score. Greater than 1 is above average support, and less than 1 is below average support.

All schools in Erie County are above 1, except Perkins. Perkins is at a .88, below average support from the community. In comparison, Sandusky is at 1.85, well above average support from the community.

fifteenthgreen

Right, but you pay the tax bill with your income. I will not give this board and superintendent another blank check. Simple. Make some changes! Incompetence should not be rewarded.

Bherrle

15th,

I you make less than a CPA, then should you not be in a home that is worth less than the CPA's? Therefore, your tax bill is lower, even if the millage is the same.

The point is that there are many other communities in Ohio that are much more willing to fund their school district than Perkins is. And that hasn't just happened during the past five years. That is thirteen years worth of the either the district avoiding putting levies on the ballot, or the voters saying no. Our millage is lower.

It is not a blank check. The levy is for a specific amount of money, and it would need to be renewed in 10 years by the voters, if the district were to ask for the whole amount to be renewed. Both the Kalahari and Menard's properties come off of the TIF's they are current under in the next ten years, which will bring extra revenue to the district.

Cowboy

VOTING NO AGAIN! And I will continue to vote NO until the inside millage is moved back, Gunner is fired and a REASONABLE levy is put on the ballot!

fifteenthgreen

What's the money for, bherrle? It changes by the day...or election.

VOTENO

.

Colonel Angus

I hope Huron stays open enrollment, otherwise it's time to buy Sandusky school uniforms and a bulletproof vest.

deertracker

What is the vest for?

Strong Schools ...

Support the 21st century learner! Support the students of Perkins on November 5! Please read the facts on the levy website!
http://perkinslevy.org/content/2...

fifteenthgreen

21st Century child who is being taught to lead our American Heroes to the polls in their wheelchair....all for 17 votes!

Bherrle

15th,

That is not true, and I urge you to stop with rhetoric.

fifteenthgreen

You're right, bherrle. Many of the girls basketball team refused to because they felt it was wrong. Must have been the next shift that did!

fifteenthgreen
themomx6

" First, we cannot move the entire 5.2 mils of "Inside Millage" back to operations at the current time, unless we generate additional money to pay off the $3.5 million loan taken out by the Board. Whether the "No" group agrees or not, the district has a $3.5 million loan that needs to be paid off over the next 4.5 years."

^^^^ And just who's fault is that???!!!??? It's time for YOU and the current BOE to go! The people of Perkins are NOT as stupid as you seem to think we are.

I DO agree with THIS part of your post:

"1. Fire me as superintendent

2. Elect two new Board members to promote a change of direction

3. Move the "Inside Millage" back to general operations."

^^^^ Really like point number 1.

Strong Schools ...

Read why you should support the STUDENTS! Get the facts at the levy website!
http://perkinslevy.org/

Resident51

What you don't understand - Jim - is that there is NO facility issue to address. What you have is fine.

The "complex financial issue" was brought on by you and the board by moving inside millage, paying for half the cost of a football stadium and hiring architects before your "complex" plan was approved by the voters. It's not my problem you have a $3.5 million dollar loan to pay off now.

Your open letter only motivates me to Vote NO!

Colonel Angus

Actually, it is your problem that YOU, not him have a $3,500,000.00 loan to pay off now. Jim doesn't live in Perkins.

Hawkeye

Jim never intended to live in Perkins he bought a house in Oregon 2 months after he was hired here. C'mon why raise taxes in a town you live in? Just screw with someone else's community.

Strong Schools ...

He has always had the house in Oregon. A family illness kept him on Oregon because he had to help take care of an ill family member. Call the board office and he will be willing to share his story. The taxes in Oregon are much higher than Perkins anyways. He has been completely devoted to this district and puts in unlimited hours.

Know the facts and visit the levy website! Support the students and our FUTURE!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

Who cares where he lives. He works here and isn't getting the job done and the poor test results are a true indicator. One man has divided a community!

beesknees

This is funny! He has ALWAYS had the house in Oregon. Really? Since the day he was born? UNLIMITED hours? Isn't he LIMITED to 24 hours per day like the rest of us? Vote NO!!

VoteYES

Do you put in hours after your done being off the clock? I know teachers and administration do of the Perkins District.

Resident51

True. But I'm not going to vote yes for his bad choices. They can find a way with the money they are already getting from me.

Strong Schools ...

Please visit the levy website and get facts about the schools! Support the students in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/content/s...

fifteenthgreen
The Bizness

I don't live in your area but I would beg to differ about the facilities. That building is in need of some upgrades.

Resident51

Really? Like what? Every hear of the permanent improvement budget? Maybe they should have used this money to maintain their buildings all these year. Look at Margaretta, Sandusky, SMCC....all educating students in older, well-kept buildings and doing a fine job.

Strong Schools ...

We have one of the oldest buildings in the area. The high school dates back to the 1920's and they kept adding different sections to make it bigger. Please get the facts at the levy website!
Vote yes in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/content/s...

fifteenthgreen

One section/hallway is that old. The north end. Tear it down and put up a new wing with the funds you moved....oh, and don't forget about that immediate asbestos emergency!

Bherrle

Resident 51,

In response to your comment "What you don't understand - Jim - is that there is NO facility issue to address. What you have is fine."

Please describe for us your qualifications to make this assessment on the long term viability and conditions of the facilities. Please let us know when and specifically how you have made yourself fully aware of the conditions of the facilities. When did you perform your inspections?

I'm going to focus on just the High School for the moment. Do you really think it is "fine" that there is asbestos in numerous areas of the building (ceilings, floor tile, pipe insulation, etc?). Asbestos which would cost at least $2.5 million dollars to remove. And that's not replacing anything, that's just the removal of ceilings, floors, insulation, etc. Add more cost put something in it's place. And oh, it can't be done in three months time, it would take longer than a summer break, so now we have to find a place for high school students for part of a school year.

Building plumbing - properly fixing the building plumbing will be another $3.5 million dollars. This would include that upstairs bathroom that was closed over 20 years ago and is still closed. Oh, and in case you didn't know, which I didn't until realize until recently, you can't fix the plumbing problems without dealing with the asbestos problem too, because a lot of the pipes are wrapped in asbestos insulation, and/or are in areas were other asbestos containing materials would need to be disturbed.

$6,000,000 on just those two issues. There are many others (such as the corrosion of the exterior electrical conduit). The districts annual PI budget is between $700 -800K. This is money that is currently being spent on buildings and ground maintenance (as an example maintaining parking lots), the bus fleet, etc. The district would have to stop maintaining anything, and collect approx 8 years worth of the current PI budget to deal with just those two issues.

The board moved inside millage to set aside money for facilities needs, be that renovation or new. The football stadium & track was un-insurable and was on the brink of being closed, with a minimum repair bill of $1.2 million. Architects are needed to draw up plans that lead to determining costs.

Yes, it is your problem, as it is the problem of every resident of Perkins. The Board and Supt. are doing their jobs by planning for and looking to the future. I urge you to contact the district and ask for a tour of the high school, as it relates to these issues. Hell, I'll take you on the tour myself if they'll let me. The issues are real, and the longer we ignore, the worse they are going to get.

fifteenthgreen

"2.5 million dollars to remove the asbestos" that could potentially harm our students or 1.7 million stadium district donation and 3.5 million for a building loan, plus, plus? Why was this money not spent to insure the immediate safety of our children, teachers and community??? If we're so worried about it, why has this emergency not already been taken care of, bherrle?

Is the district going to continue to kick the can down the road on this asbestos issue? It should immediately be taken care of - levy or no levy. They don't care, though. It's just another good scare tactic.

Wald

Yeah, taking out a $3.5 MILLION loan for architectural plans makes a lot of sense when asbestos is apparently such a big concern. How can we trust anyone with such screwed up priorities such as making plans for a new building and building new football stadiums when our children are inhaling asbestos every day?

Strong Schools ...

The district does as much as they can to take care of the abestos. If you go into the schools you can see where they have tried to replace floor and ceiling tiles. But it is like putting a band aid on a cut. Eventually the band aid is going to come off and you will have to address the issue again.
The stadium was not safe for our community. Children were falling through the stands because they were so bad and our track was not even usable. We had to hold track events elsewhere due to the bad condition of the track. The community worked together with the board to fund the stadium. The community helped raise funds for the stadium. They had to fix the stadium and take care of the safety of our students, community, and visiting athletes. Support the students in November and vote yes!
Check out the levy website for the facts!
http://perkinslevy.org/content/s...

Kobayashi Maru

The band aid on a cut doesn't doesn't make sense. When I get a cut I take care of it and it heals. Why hasn't Perkins been taking care of the buildings all along? What did the P.I. monies go for?

fifteenthgreen

What do you mean address it again? Band aid? Once the asbestos is removed, it is gone. Give me a break and get you facts straight. One child fell through because the parent wasn't paying attention. A child could fall down the existing bleacher steps.....so we replace them? Make your child sit on their butt and watch the game or go home!

mikesee

How about we send the kids to school to learn and not sports!

Strong Schools ...

Perkins has a great educational system set up! Technology, STEM, and 21st century learning tools are a priority! Check out the website for more facts and see why Perkins is the school of choice in our area!
http://perkinslevy.org/content/s...

fifteenthgreen

"Technology, STEM, and 21st century learning tools are a priority" but apparently test scores per the Department of Education don't matter. Why are Perkins test scores so low compared to every other district in Erie County but Sandusky....and they're closing the gap for the second to last place position. Why are our district grades so low? Perkins is second to last!

Wald

The Erie County Health Department said the high school was fine. Or are you saying they are liars?

Strong Schools ...

NO one said they were liars. They looked at the building "right now". We need to think long term and think about the safety of our students tomorrow and in the future. Check out the facts on the levy website.

VOTE YES!
http://perkinslevy.org/content/s...

fifteenthgreen

But it was our understanding that this wasn't about a new building. Teachers were laid off so we could just scrape by. What is it? A new school? Get the teachers back? Programs? No fees? What is it that you want? Speak clearly, please!

Kobayashi Maru

Teachers were laid off? I've heard that the newest teacher in the district went from part time to full time! The kids still have gym, art, and music. No teacher, except the track teacher, isn't working. That's what I've been told, can't verify if that's true. I don't attend any of the schools and my child graduated a few years ago. Anyone know?

Hawkeye

So lets just spend 50 million on a new school because that makes all the sense in the world. 6,000,000 or 50,000,000 lets see what the taxpayers think.

StayInformed

Repairs have to be done to any facility and there has to be money to use for it. The stadium needed repair. The BOE did the smart thing and actually saved the tax payers money by seeking donors.

All districts have loans of some type. It's a fact of life. They need to be paid. Wouldn't you rather pay off loans at a cheaper rate than cost the tax payers more in the long run.

Vote yes! It will save you money!

Resident51

And the threat of "more cuts"....we heard you cry wolf the first time (and second...and....)

Bherrle

The district is down 24 positions from 2 years ago. No one cried wolf, 51.

Strong Schools ...

The district has cut positions and made students pay-to-play. These are not threats but they are our reality. Be responsible and put the students first! Vote yes in November!
Check out the levy website for more facts!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

But I thought it was a new building we were voting for. Which is it? Teachers being cut? Asbestos removal? Pay to play? What do you need the money for? Operations? Repairs? Loan payments? The levy site doesn't clarify where the money is going. Why do you want our money? What is your message?

The Bizness

If I lived in Perkins I would probably vote yes after reading this...he seems to make a lot more sense than all you people just shouting "NO!"

Thomas Paine

Agreed. Offer some substance. Agree or disagree the district just offered substance.

Strong Schools ...

Agreed Bizness. The "NO" voters do not have a plan to help our students. Support the students in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

Don't have a plan? All I ever here is no new school...new school....no new school....we're going to wait.....need it now. Define your objective and plan. It changes with each election. Come on. Which is it!!!!

StayInformed

Thank you The Bizness!

It's nice to see the plan outlined in a logical/concise manner. It's unfortunate that the no voters won't even bother to read the letter. They will just respond- no!

fifteenthgreen

Why read it. It will change based on what they feel the "no" voters want to hear. flip floppers

Truth2u

not to worry, Jim. You will get your levy even if it takes you four elections to wear down the voters resistance, and the teachers will be awarded more benefits & money and then in four years after you blow it all you can write another letter and start the process over again.

Strong Schools ...

There have been no pay raises given to the teachers, administrators, or classified staff in over 5 years. They are trying to help the situation and NOW it is time for the community to step up and do their part. Vote yes in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

Start producing in the classroom and maybe they'll earn a raise. Failing test scores via the Ohio Board of Education in unacceptable to me. Your standards may be lower but not mine. This administration is not getting the job done! Our school is failing miserably in the classroom and the scores don't lie. But, we're 8-0 on the new football field so that's good!

beesknees

Strong Schools, according to buckeyeinstitute.org you are wrong. Countless teachers are making lots more money now than in 2008. In addition, James Gunner' salary was $106,391 in 2010 and now makes $117,200. Sounds like a nice pay raise to me. Try getting your facts straight before trying to "inform" us.

Eph 2 8-10

SHS is about five years older than PHS, and they're not wailing the need of a new building. The only "old" building in Perkins is the original elementary school on the north side of the campus.

Take care of what you have and stop wasting time and effort on grandiose plans at the expense of the taxpayer. We [especially senior citizens] can't afford your wants.

Vote NOvember

smeltz

EPH 2 8-10...Don't speak to soon...Last school year I was at a meeting with Dr Sanders and other community leaders & clergy. He shared in that meeting about the plan to begin pursuing renovations/replacements of schools in Sandusky. He communicated a lot of the same things that Mr Gunner and the BOE have been talking about for the past several years...new buildings, stem, etc. Check out the Transformation of Sandusky City Schools on their website.

Strong Schools ...

Perkins high school was constructed in the 1920's and they have added on sections since then. Perkins High School is way older than SHS. Dr. Sanders is exploring the thought of building new buildings. He has been talking about it during the community forums. Get the facts on the Perkins school buildings at the levy website! Support the students in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

The north wing at Perkins needs to be replaced. That's it. The rest needs some repair. This will buy us plenty of time for economic recovery.

Smcc Alum

It's not to late to send your kids to St. Mary's.

http://www.sanduskycentralcathol...

Darkhorse

Does Mr. Gunner have to have a disclaimer on his vote yes letter?

VOTENO

Vote yes

Good 2 B Me

NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO

VOTENO

NOvember!

starryeyes83

Just how many jobs are going to be available in this country in 10 years , for these 21st century students?

Scary, ain't it?

[ eyeroll ]

Strong Schools ...

Perkins will still prepare the students for the 21st century so they can be educated and competitive citizens in our society. Hopefully they will bring their talents back to Perkins. Support the students in November and check out the levy website!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

Poor test scores at Perkins nearing emergency levels only tells me to support Ehove even more. They are producing productive citizens. It is not the Ehove of old, either. They will bring their talents back here why? To work in retail, a restaurant or be a lifeguard?

Thomas Paine

Love or hate him this is a great response and explanation by Mr Gunner. Not sure what else the district can do to explain the very complicated nature of school funding. I hope it helps with those that aren't blinded by hatred and refuse to acknowledge facts. ALL voters NEED to show up at the polls not 44%. As a resident of the district, I really hope a high percentage of the no show voters vote this time around. Defunding the school because you disagree with the board will only hurt everyone in this community in the long run. For the trolls please pick up a book about Roberts Rules and understand how a board works and votes on issues before placing blame. Just wondering how many of those that commented actually read this statement or if they saw it was a response by Gunner and just scrolled to the bottom and commented like my son does when he doesn't get his way in minecraft.

TellTheTruth

Being called a "troll" is fightin' words! Come on TP! Roberts Rules don't change anything regarding accepting Gunner's explanation, which in effect is a signed confession to a failed administration of the taxpayer's money. After levy failures clearly indicating voters' "thumbs down" on replacing school buildings in the district, then bypassing their votes by the underhanded/sneaky(even if legal) moving inside millage to bring about their agenda the chance of passing a levy is small at best. Now Gunner has led us to the brink of falling over the cliff into an abyss of deep debt of his own making. Why should voters approve higher taxes to bail him and the BOE out now? His comments about two opposition candidates running for seats on the school board is totally unethical in my opinion. If the loan cannot be paid, let's consider getting some assistance from those agencies and 'experts' who may have colluded with Gunner in insisting Perkins Schools buildings are in terminal condition.

VOTENO

Vote no you bot.

Thomas Paine

Let me also state I didn't agree with the millage move then, but do agree now that its moved moving it back would be a financial disaster. I also don't agree with the loan, but it was voted and needs to be addressed. The board has made some bonehead moves, making another bonehead move to fix the first one (moving the millage back)is going to do exactly what Gunner said...cost us more. As far as facilities go- please ask to take a tour of the facilities- they are substandard and in this day and age it is cheaper to tear down and rebuild than it is to repair and remodel.

Thomas Paine

I don't like the solutions any more than anyone else, but saying there is no problem and making more bad decisions on top of ones already made is only going to make the issues bigger. I have no problem with any no voter that is on a fixed income and has to choose between fixing a soon to be broken school system vs medication. But placing a no vote with your head in the sand about the real issues I have some serious problems with that. I ask the NO voter committee to come up with their figures in rebuttal to Mr Gunners figures, come up with their solutions. Lets have a REAL debate with REAL numbers. My guess is the NO voter committee will not come up with a more viable solution using REAL numbers. Its all talk, as soon as the new board members get in, I believe their first words will be some four letter expletive followed by why we need a levy or the State will take over and raise our millage to the state average. Which by the way is much higher than the going levy. I hope the no committee is ready for the trolls to turn on them when that happens.

Thomas Paine

I also have a problem with the voter that says they don't have any kids in school so why should they pay. How did you get your education? My guess is someone else that didn't have kids paid for it just like you should now. Its called living in a community and paying it forward. This community needs to grow up and start acting like adults.

looking around

@Thomas Paine I've lived and paid property taxes in three states, my school years were not in this community. I continue to pay property taxes in two states inclusive of this one. I'm in my sixty's and have no children. I think I've paid my share thank you and really don't feel I should have to continue to pay for your kids. I'm voting NO!

What I have a problem with is people who don't own property or pay taxes voting to raise mine!

starryeyes83

Renters pay via raised rent. One way or another, not everyone is on Metro.

deertracker

Finally, an honest comment!

princedenny

tracker....this comment, your history of trolling, and your (usually) ignorant opinion make me think you're one of the metro people living off others. Sorry for your situation, unless you're milking the system and not trying to find a job.

Strong Schools ...

You chose to live in our community. It takes a community to raise a child...and to educate one. If you can afford three properties than I am sure you can afford to pass this levy. Just because you don't have children doesn't mean you can't help others. Think outside of yourself and help this community. Put the students and future before yourself and vote yes in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/

looking around

I say NO NO NO!

themomx6

Is Thomas Paine really Bherrle?

Bherrle

Nope, you'll hear from me later tonight.

VOTENO

Oh great

Thomas Paine

I am not Bherrle. I also understand that frustration of people who don't own voting. Its been ruled unconstitutional by the State supreme court yet it continues. The way schools are funded is a joke. However that is how the system works until we vote for change at the state level, not at the local level. Change at this level will do nothing to solve this district or any districts issues. I am sorry you have had to pay taxes in multiple states. But I personally am a firm believer in public education and feel I should make a personal sacrifice of things I want to make sure my children, your children, and everyone elses children have an opportunity. If I can afford to live and still give back. I feel sorry for those that get forced out of their homes because of taxes- one reason I despise our states decision of a rollback of the Homestead exemption.

mikesee

$20 here, $30 there, $27 out of pocket somewhere else and the next thing you know is that with all of the increased costs such as utilities, insurance (home/auto), groceries etc could add up to over $200+ per month. How much of a raise did people get this year? Aaahhh yes, not that much. So the question is where do people get the extra cash?

To be fair this does not just apply to Perkins but all schools.

Strong Schools ...

I have not received a raise in years and neither has my spouse. We believe that strong schools and education will enhance a stronger community and we will do our part! Vote yes for the students and think about our future!
http://perkinslevy.org/

themomx6

"This community needs to grow up and start acting like adults."

We are. It's called "living within a budget, and not spending money we don't have." Gunner, and the BOE, should try it. Seriously, what person (or BOE) in their right mind takes out a 3.5 million dollar loan to plan a new school building that they don't even have the funds to build?? Utter incompetence, and you want us to vote to give them even more money to mis-handle? It's called a lack of TRUST. The voters in Perkins have NO TRUST in this current administration, and you know what? They're getting mistrust because that's exactly what they've earned!

Bherrle

Please visit www.perkinslevy.org to find the answers to these questions and more.

themomx6,

Incompetence would be continuing to ignore the facilities issues facing our district. The loan you reference was not just for a school design, it included studies on renovation and building new, as well as the districts share of the stadium project. I have a longer answer for you but it will have to wait till tomorrow. They have not mishandle the districts finances.

PyrkinsPyrate

So the loan was partially about the stadium too? So it wasn't just 1.7 million of our dollars they spent on the stadium but part of the 3.5M loan also?

Bherrle

Yes, the loan was partially about the stadium too, but no it was not $1.7M plus money from the loan. The $1.7M came from the loan. I believe the timing was such that the $1.7M (or at least part of it) was initially paid from the districts cash reserves, and then cash reserve replenished by the loan.

Strong Schools ...

Oh my goodness...please check your facts.
http://perkinslevy.org/
Vote yes!

fifteenthgreen

It's the truth. If the buildings are in that bad of shape and asbestos is rampant, why are we not fixing those problems first. Afterall, it is about the safety of the children, isn't it? What is your message? Asbestos? No Asbestos? We can live with it a while longer? We can fix it now? Build a stadium? Live with Asbestos? Free laptop? Asbestos in the classroom? Not sure what you are trying to tell the voters and taxpayers? The levy site doesn't talk about teaching in asbestos laced classrooms. Why are we not fixing this problem....yesterday!

oldpirate

If anyone wants more answers that are accurate and true you can go to www.perkinslevy.org

fifteenthgreen
Bherrle

Very funny 15th. But yet again, you bring no viable, detailed solutions to the discussion.

fifteenthgreen

A solution would be to not spend money on the future, i.e. building loans, when you have an immediate asbestos threat in our schools. Who is responsible for fixing this emergency and why hasn't it been taken care of? Aren't there government grants available for this type of crisis in public schools?

My viable solution, bherrle: Don't spend accrued money in the district savings account for a dream school, free laptops and stadium donations when you have an immediate danger to everyone that enters those buildings. Priorities!

Strong Schools ...

ummm okay??? Get the facts at the levy website. Support the students in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

"ummm okay?" You sound like our board members and Superintendent when asked for a blank check. We need 1.7 million dollars to donate to a field. ummm okay??? We need free laptops for everyone. ummm okay??? We want a 3.5 million dollar loan for a school plan without voter approval. ummm okay??? We want a new school without voter approval. ummm okay??? We want raises for poor test scores. ummm okay??? We want to move millage. ummm okay???

When are you going to stop wanting??? ummm okay

Thomas Paine

You cannot compare school/public finance to personal/business finance. Two completely different realms of how things work financially. The main culprit of all the schools issues lies with the State. How schools are funded is ridiculous and it pits the board/superintendent against the community. They ARE living within a budget. You can disagree all you want, but they are required to have a balanced budget. Perkins just happens to be deficit spending and the money will be gone soon. You have seen the reaction when services are cut or services are charged for or if too many students are in a classroom. Please offer solutions as to what this board or any school board is supposed to do with a broken funding system that is impossible for the general public to understand while being forced to offer services at a loss? That's the bigger issue. Its not one super over another. Gunner leaves another comes and the SAME problems will exist. This community and all voters are ticked, I get it I am too, but for different reasons. Our state has left our education system in shambles and it isn't going to get any better anytime soon, the only resource schools have for funding is us. If we don't fund it another community will and our community falls even further into disrepair and poverty.

schaefer

i have been in those buildings and they are pathetic. my grandkids attend perkins schools.i live in bellevue and we built two new schools a few years ago.my wife and i are both retired and on fixed incomes but we still voted for the levy. come on people let's start thinking about the kids.

Stop It

You voted on a levy to keep old schools in repair. They took that, ran with it to the state for more funding and tore those old schools down to build new. How many failures in the new equipment has transpired?

Strong Schools ...

Thank you Schaefer! Vote yes and think about our future..the kids!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

She's one vote you can count on but can't get enough of her own.

observer

I'm a very big into high school sports. I travel all over attending games. I've been in most every school building in the area numerous times. Schools in Erie, Huron, Ottawa, Lorain, Sandusky, Seneca counties, and more. Perkins school buildings are no worse, and a lot better, than most of the schools I've been in. Sorry, but the "Perkins schools are falling apart" mantra just won't fly with me. If Perkins needs a new school, then heaven help the rest of the area, because they're in much worse shape. I know BS when I hear it. Besides, if Perkins IS in such bad shape, why did the BOE let it get that way? And I agree with another poster who said "who takes out a 3 1/2 million dollar loan to pay an architect to design a new building that they don't even have the money to build?" Twist that any way you want, it still comes up "STUPID".

kal-el

You're joking, right? Your basis is on the quality of the other schools' sports facilities?? You've been to all of the classrooms in the new schools in Huron, Lorain, Sandusky, and Ottawa counties and you think Perkins' are on par??

Wow.

fifteenthgreen

I have and the conditions of our classrooms are better than most, unless you consider the asbestos laced portions. Why are these issues being ignored and not immediately being repair? Anyone?

Strong Schools ...

I don't believe you! Our schools are in such bad shape and a lot of area schools have addressed their facility issues..Port Clinton, Bellevue, Danbury, etc. Get the facts on our levy website or better yet, get a tour of the schools. Vote yes in November!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

Why have we not addressed our classrooms but we address the football field instead? Our classroom are deemed "dangerous"? Asbestos or football. Asbestos or laptops. Asbestos or teacher raises. Asbestos or design loans. How about a loan to fix the immediate asbestos crisis or can that wait. What are your priorities or don't you care. Use the millage move to fix the asbestos now. No, we want to wait until the voters cave so we can get our dream school to match our dream field. Wait, I didn't think this was about a new school. What is it? Clarify your message. After all, our kids are breathing this stuff in as we speak!!!

middleclassworker

I see how this letter can attempt to clear up some reasons the board did whet they did....BUT....every action, reason, or excuse in this letter points to the fact they buried the school district into a $ 3.5 million debt that the community does NOT support. This is a backdoor attempt to sell us on a new school campus that is not needed.

kal-el

How many board meetings have you attended? Or are you relying on the integrity of the Sandusky Register to not stir up controversy to sell papers/keep people clicking on their trashy blogs?

middleclassworker

I have been to zero meetings. But I have read this letter from Gunner where he gives multiple reasons for finding a way to cover the loan that the majority of the tax payers do not support. If you don't believe me, read it again. I watched the debates on the SR website. But i'm sure the letter was twisted by the SR and I sure it was a fake debate too.

And I see you had no problem joining the trashy blog I am sooo guilty of creating here.

I search for truths, I don't have people hand me their version of the truth. So if I am wrong.....please explain!

Strong Schools ...

You totally missed the point of the letter. The board has given and researched many options to help our schools financially. All the "NO" voters can do is say "NO". They have no plan to help our students or community. I am with Gunner on this one. Check out the levy website for more facts!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

Define your plan and stick to it. It changes daily and the scare tactics change with each election. Asbestos/sewage one levy. Teacher cuts next levy. Program cuts next levy. Now you're lumping it all together. Which is it? Come on, Strong Schools. Clarify your campaign!!!

middleclassworker

Correct me if I am wrong....But didn't the school district loan the $ 3.5 million from Citizens Bank? The same bank the Mr. Chapman (BOE member) is the VP of commercial loans? I have no doubt he has benefited by in some way by securing his future employment, achieving a bonus, or advancing in the banking ranks.

Hawkeye

So what you are telling us is that we need to pass this levy so Chapman doesn't lose his banking job??

Bherrle

You have "no doubt?" Then prove it. I'm getting real tired off innocent people being accused of things by people who won't identify themselves and have no proof.

middleclassworker

I said correct me if I'm wrong! did the school borrow $3.5 million (+/- a little) y or n ? Did they borrow it from Citizens Bank y or n ? Is mr chapman the VP of commercial loans or did he lie on the introduction of himself during the online debate ?

middleclassworker

My identity ...... Perkins twp tax payer !

So now you know me....who are you?

As I had said in the past, don't force me to support actions I don't agree with, any "yes voter" out there, resident or not, the school system will eccept your money, levy or not! So if you are that strong of a believer then pay up!

Bherrle

Middle class,

You made a direct accusation, that Terry is getting something due to that loan. It's on you to prove it. We are are not here to allow you to make any allegation you want, and then have us set about proving it wrong.

The answers to your questions have been out there in public for over a year now, from the day the loan was made. Yes, the loan was from Citizens, and yes, Terry is a VP of Commercial Lending at Citizens. One of 17 VP's of Commercial Lending at Citizens. Do you think there's a chance that one of the other 16 handled that transaction so that Terry was not involved in it??

I stand behind my statement. Saying you are a taxpayer isn't enough when it comes to accusing someone of wrongdoing when you have no proof, only circumstance with which to make the accusation. SO tell us who you are. My name is Brad Herrle, that has also been out there for some time now.

middleclassworker

So your only argument with anything I have said is that he may not be benefiting in any way from the loan? You would have been better off never responding to my post... this is too funny....I set out to make a simple post, and you ran it right up the flag pole, verifying all my facts. Thank You

Maybe the SR can take these accusations and use them for their next story. My guess is, I am not the only one who has noticed this shade of gray in the loan story. If I sit on a board that signs a $3.5 m agreement to the company I am employed by, then I get a benefit from it...my employer can afford to support mine or others employment, raises, health care coverage, retirement contributions, and possible end of year bonuses.

Strong Schools ...

Again you are spreading false information...get the facts before you type about Mr. Chapman!
http://perkinslevy.org/
Support the Students!

fifteenthgreen

Who cares about Chapman. He'll be gone and we'll be stuck with a 3.5 mil loan and ZERO direction/leadership. Nice job!

observer

Where is ole Bherrle? He's been awfully quiet lately.

Bherrle

I'm here, Huckleberry. If you don't get the reference, I'll splain it later.

Stop It

You're no daisy.

Bherrle

There you go! Stop It got it.

queenjhb

Gunner, move your a$$ to this area, pay taxes, and generously take a salary cut, lead by example. Vote no.

Strong Schools ...

A lot of people commute to work! I don't care where he lives as long as he does his job. He has done a lot for our students and he puts in a lot of hours at the board office. Support the students...stay focused on the students and the future of our community!
http://perkinslevy.org/

fifteenthgreen

Who cares where he lives. Our schools are failing in the classroom and our community is divided by one individual. Why? The future of our community? Please. We've been going backwards for twenty years or more.

kal-el

Great to see some adults come on here and emphasize the importance of education. Like Gunner or not, voters had an opportunity to pass this levy before the State changed the rollback rules. But they needed to make a point. Instead attending board meetings and having conversations, and learning how school funding works, they promoted shouting loud and voting no. That strategy has only made matters worse for everyone. People need to think a little harder about the people they listen to...and what kind of town they want to live in...and maybe listen to folks who actually know the how school funding works instead of jumping on the conspiracy bandwagon.

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