VIDEO: Get the Knute Rockne magazine in Sunday's Register

Matt Westerhold
Aug 3, 2013

Get "100 Years Forward," a special insert magazine in Sunday's Register. Sports editor Mark Hazelwood and Sports editor emeritus Butch Wagner talk about how football's forward pass was perfected in Sandusky.

Jason and Brandy Bennett, leaders of the Perkins Schools levy support committee were also on the program answering questions from viewers about Tuesday's election.

Click here for the ePaper, for home delivery or buy the Register daily at a newsstand near you. 

Watch the program in the player below

Watch live streaming video from registermedia at



They support it because they want someone else to pay for their kids sports, I've got a great idea,cut a few salaries, pay more for benes, stop allowing people to retire in their 50's, and end double dipping. Work like the rest of humanity, problem solved.

Good 2 B Me

Don't forget to not take money from the operating fund to pay for a football stadium!


Is this true or are you just perpetuating an erroneous statement? Where can the voters see this in writing. Where can we get the proof?


They said that they were going to pay for their kids. So why do you think they just want to get someone to pay for their kids? This is going to hurt lower income kids A LOT harder than anyone else.


This is unbelievable.

Is Westerhold a journalist or a de facto member of the Perkins Levy committee? Softball after softball and then endorsing the tax increase. He's a joke.


"The Register is a watchdog"

"The best governments in action are School Boards"

This man is delusioned.

Revenue up 13% in 5 years, net income down 178%. Why does Gunner still have a job?

Matt Westerhold

Thanks citizen, for your comments. You seem to believe you are an expert on many topics. 'Between the Lines" is a talk program with a format designed to allow guests to share their thoughts and agendas and take questions from the audience. Perhaps you don't have an understanding of the format. In the future, you might consider allowing others to have an opinion different from yours and respond without the personal attacks on people with whom you disagree. 


Then be a fair and balanced journalist.


Wanna be reporters at the SR. Matt has his panties ruffled because of you citizen, congrats!


Between The Lines is an opinion piece, right? People use it to express opinions. You want to ask these poor folks to explain the inner workings of Perkins schools. If the board and Gunner can't, how do you expect them to?!?! They look like a couple of nice (maybe naive)people that thought they could help their kids by doing a web piece that obviously only attracts people who want to crucify them for doing what they think is best. I don't know if you all caught it, but the guy almost came out and told the viewers to vote the board out in November. I bet he probably hates all of this but doesn't want his kids schools to implode.


Personal attacks? Not allowing others to have differing opinions? Thinking I'm an expert?

I'm just about the facts. Revenue up 13% and net income down 174% during Gunner's tenure. Perkins Schools is now losing $1 mil+ per year after years of $1 mil+ annual profits. Gunner says the District is on the brink of financial ruin and can't fund their operations, while simultaneously moving millions of operating dollars to build new buildings and facilities, and taking out an additional $3 million in loans to design and plan new buildings.

Again, that's not being an expert... just the facts.

And instead of you asking any of these questions, you dispeled "myths" about Gunner's failed and divisive leadership and the situation of Perkins Schools, and essentially endorsed the tax increase.

And then respond to me but throw multiple false accusations at me, instead of responding to the actual facts.

That's Westerhold for ya. I'm surprised you haven't suggested that good ole Dedrie or Chief Nuesse to take over Perkins Schools!!


Could you all elaborate on where you are getting your "facts"? I'm a Perkins resident but I'm tired of everyone throwing out random "facts" without citing sources. Where are you all getting your "facts"?


The State of Ohio Auditor's website. This site has the audited financial statements for the past decade of Perkins Local School District. These financial statements are audited by Julian & Grube out of Westerville and give users of the financial statements assurance that the financial position of Perkins Schools is presented fairly and accurately.

It is in these audited financial statements that one can learn of Gunner's failed leadership:

Revenue is up 13% in the past 5 years, and net income is down appx. 170%. How does that happen? How does an individual so dramatically mismanage their organization, yet still have a job? How does this happen in a public entity, such as a public school district, yet the local "journalists" don't even question as to how that may have happened?

They are all over the Sandusky budget and Ms. Ard, but Perkins Schools with a revenue increase of 13% and a decrease in net profit of 170%... They don't even ask about that, or report that. They just endorse the tax increase and function as the mouthpiece of the Tax Increase Committee.


As a conservative I want local people making decisions for local government decisions. Put our tax money in the hands of our local people to use in the best interest of our local community. What do you want, "Obamaschool". One of our founding fathers Thomas Jefferson said "A people who want independence and ignorance, will never have what has never been and never will be." Don't like Gunner? Run for the board. Let us know when you throw your hat in the race.


Westerhold laying out “myths” for the Perkins Levy Committee. Journalist or a joke?

Mr. Bennet asked us to look at financials. Why did you not ask why Gunner has led School District from a profit of $1.5 million to annual losses of $1+ million.

Why did you not ask why Gunner chose new facilities and buildings over the education of the students?

Why did you not ask why if Perkins Schools is on the brink of financial disaster and having to “dismantle” themselves as Gunner has stated repeatedly…. they would actually move millions of dollars from operations to build new facilities. And, additionally take out millions of dollars in loans to design and plan new facilities?

It’s the same as if the Register was performing very poorly financially and the Register’s management chose to move millions of dollars away from operations to build new office buildings, and takes out millions in loans to plans and design the new buildings.

That is so nonsensical. You wouldn’t find a business executive in the world that would do that…. Only Jim Gunner.

Jim Gunner strategic plan:

Revenue increases 13%, net income decreases 174%.

Unable to fund operations and having to “dismantle” themselves. So takes millions away from operations and plans new buildings and facilities with it.

What a genius.


Citizen - I researched the bi-annual budget for Perkins schools and from what I have found, Perkins was running a deficit since before gunner was employed with the schools (they also had funds saved up from prior years they were using to cover the difference). Do you have something you could offer that is different and where can I see it?


Yes. I have no idea where you are looking.

But, please look at the State of Ohio Auditor's website, then do an audit search for Perkins Local School District.

About 10 years of audited financial statements are on there. These are audited by Julien & Grube.

"Change in Net Assets" in a non-profit or public entity is what net income or profit would be in a corporation, partnership, LLC etc.

For nearly the past decade, Perkins Schools have had net profits of usually $1 million+. However, Gunner has led the District to $1 million+ losses for the past 2 years.

In fact, over the past 5 years, revenue has increased 13%. While Gunner's woeful mismanagement has caused net profit to plummet appx. 170%.

Why you may ask? I have no idea. If he was running any other business, he would no longer have a job. And don't expect the Register to report on this. It doesn't follow their narrative of Perkins Schools not receiving any new money (while the facts indisputedly show revenue increases of 13% over the past 5 years... so why the need for new TAX money?) and that Gunner is a fiscally responsible leader/manager (while the facts indisputedly show that not to be the case. Even as revenue rises 13%, somehow old Jimmy has led the District to a 170% profit decline).


2003/01/01 valuation $338,180.00
2006/01/01 valuation $271,130.00
Current Valuation $230,560.00
Finished Living Area: 3506
Number of Full Baths: 3


1991/01/01 valuation $243,390.00

1991 was 22 years ago. How does the value of land and improvements drop from $243,390 (1991) to $230,560?

Some properties (land and improvements) increased over 300% in that span of time in Erie County, Ohio.

There are many mysteries at the Erie County Ohio Auditor's office.


many properties were devaluated in 1991, especially if they were over rated in the first place. The ECAO did re evaluations on many homes in the Sandusky area around that time at the request of many owners due to many homes being "hiked" to unreasonable amounts. I remember that very well. Or did these people ask for and receive a homestead exemption of 25% sometime during that time? Either is feasible.


I think we need to let the County Auditor know about this property. Seems undervalued to me.


Cenatauri - based on this link, it looks as though the latest assessment was completed at the end of the 2012 tax year...that would be January of this year, right?


To quote information from the Public Record on the parcel in the link.
"Legal Annual Tax is for Tax Year 2012 Payable 2013."

I am pointing out the inconsistencies of the valuations in Erie County, Ohio. As I mentioned before, how does a nice home and land drop in value from 1991 to the present time in 22 years? The appraisal for 1991 was probably done in 1990. The records do not allow me to go back beyond 1991. Other properties went up in value 300% and some of the land in the parcels information went up over 400%. In the parcel that I provided a link to, the house was built in 1985, the land value was $39,710 in 1991 but decreased in value 22 years later to $33,900. Does anybody find that strange?


I called a friend of mine that I went to college with. He works for another county's auditor and he said that land values on which homes have been built are influenced by the sale of empty lots of similar size, location, zoning, etc. So if a large farm is auctioned off next door to your house and a 100 acres of their empty land is sold and those acres are half the price of what you paid for the acre you built your house on, then the land on which your house sits will fluctuate if the county assesses your property with that farm as a recent comparison of land values. He says that property owners are typically afraid to ask for reassessments of their land because most people believes property can only appreciate but smart property owners, especially land developers, request reassessments often after large liquidations such as a nearby farm auction to save on taxes. Inversely, to do so can limit the leverage offered by the assessed property value. He said that's just his experience and told me I would have to go to my county's auditor and inquire for anything more specific


"He works for another county's auditor and he said that land values on which homes have been built are influenced by the sale of empty lots of similar size, location, zoning, etc"

Interesting comment. Which Ohio county auditor does your friend work for? I only need the name of the county and not your friend's name.
"The information in the site will answer many of your questions about Ohio's property valuation process, property tax reductions and exemptions, and many of the tasks for which the County Auditor is responsible."
"The department's Tax Equalization Division helps ensure UNIFORMITY and FAIRNESS in property taxation through its OVERSIGHT of the appraisal work of local county auditors. According to state law and department rules, auditors conduct a full reappraisal of real property every six years and update values in the third year following each sexennial reappraisal.

Again, what is the name of the Ohio county and/or auditor that your friend works for?


As a matter of fact, I'm going to start looking up the addresses of houses with vote yes signs in their yards and see what their home values are.


Bob - you are a hoot! Can I ask what your goal is with this? I think everyone in the county just was re-evaluated. My home value was decreased and I'm "underwater" now but I don't see what you plan to achieve with this or were you just frustrated and venting. It just seems like a lot of work without a clear goal. Let me know. If your goal makes sense, I might help you look up a few.


Hey Bob. Do you live in Perkins? I can't find your house. ;)

The New World Czar

There are a few questions...
1) The State of Ohio has made across-the-board budget cuts in all the departments and education is one. Why all the fuss?
2) Justification for open enrollment for student dollars is for filling the variable costs to meet the fixed costs. Any possibility that cutting the fixed costs (unessential interests) and eliminate open enrollment would un-dilute the currently-diluted student population?
3) If the courts did rule that schools weren't properly funded, then isn't this levy (like any other) unconstitutional?


(this is strictly my take on this)
1. Apparently the school is cutting programs, teachers and athletics and bringing the school down to almost a state minimum school. The Perkins residents I've talked to (my neighbors and those in sports with my three kids)are having a hard time reconciling their belief that they are a community superior to their neighboring communities (schools included) with the belief that the open enrollment is bring in either the "cream of the crop" students or the "riff-raff" from neighboring schools (this depends on whom you speak with)and not wanting to pay for any of it.
2. I think your confused. You typically can't cut fixed costs. What I understood about open enrollment from a business stand point - the schools have open capacity and that these open-enrollment students fill in bringing significantly higher marginal gains financially to the school system. If you could make one more of anything, have a guarantee that you could sell it, and do it for almost no additional cost, then it wouldn't make any sense from a business stand point not to. That's open enrollment for Perkins.
3. Ahh, here's the catch and this part is SIGNIFICANTLY paraphrased. The Ohio Supreme Court says the way schools are funded is unconstitutional but the Ohio legislature has laws mandating the funding of the public schools by the community and a fairly limited means of achieving this. So basically, the court has told the legislature what you have set up to fund schools is unconstitutional BUT until this is changed by the legislature it is illegal not to fund the schools with the means as set by the legislature of Ohio. Typical government run around and circular arguments.