Jul 30, 2013

What are the financial particulars of Perkins Schools?

Can you obtain financial information for Perkins Schools? This would help myself and others make an educated decision for the Aug. 6 levy vote. Doug in Perkins Township.

The question sought to answer exactly how much each Perkins Schools official — including teachers, administrators, staff members, and elected school board members — makes in addition to inquiries about the athletics budget.

Perkins Schools treasurer Lisa Crescimano provided the Register with numerous documents detailing this. To view the information, click any one of the files attached.

The district is proposing a 10-year, 6.73 mill emergency levy to taxpayers a week from today. If approved, the levy would generate $2.88 million per year to fund day-to-day operations for Perkins Schools, including employee salaries and benefits.
 
If approved in a week, the levy will cost the owners of a $100,000 home an additional $206 per year. That same homeowner currently pays $998 a year in school taxes.
The Mailbag is a daily feature on SanduskyRegister.com. Every weekday at noon, we will post one question-and-answer from a resident. To ask a question, send a letter to The Mailbag at 314 W. Market St., or e-mail mailbag@sanduskyregister.com. Please include your first name and a location in the e-mail, e.g. “John from Decatur Street."

Comments

donutshopguy

Bherrle,

You don't want people to look at data as black and white but you continue to use data in your arguments. Should we have the same doubt about your data? You can't have it both ways to fit your needs.

"Using just numbers, anyone can paint a negative picture". Isn't this true in the opposite point of view? If you read only the information supplied by the schools the numbers are manipulated to look the best for a "Yes" vote.

Is your data misleading?

I feel like the moderator on Meet the Press.

RMyer

I have to run, but what information from the school is "manipulated?" All school information is public record and can be verified. Answers to questions about finances and operations can be verified. I believe that the questions submitted to the district have been answered and posted online, and those answers can be verified.

Not really Meet the Press: guests and moderators on that program are known to the public. But I wonder what would discussions on Meet the Press would be like if all participants were anonymous.

donutshopguy

RMyer,

Does the school system promote information that puts them in a bad light? No. Does the public have to research the whole body of information to understand the true picture? Yes.

The school system only highlights data that puts a positive spin to promote a "Yes" vote. That's manipulation.

Bherrle

DSG,

Are you saying that the fact that district provides all the information is not enough, that they should also try to make themselves look bad?

What makes them look bad is a matter of opinion. I think we are seeing right now, just in the last few days, that the more information that gets put out there, that much more criticism comes.

Strong Schools ...

DSG,

The school district has answered the public's questions honestly on the website. They have published factual information and people still choose to ignore it and think what they want. I believe that people do not want to hear the truth and they are willing to put our community on jeopardy!

EZOB

I bought my house in 1975. Mortgage, interest, taxes, insurance and my payments were $171.00 a month. Loan is paid and my taxes alone are that much. We don't own our homes. Can't afford your taxes, there'll be a Sheriff sale on your house. You youngsters should quit putting things like soccer before your parents. Children first, right on, but sports before me? I love sports but believe if I can't pay my own way I can still afford to watch on my own TV.

Lil DAB

So TRUE EZOB, so true! "We have laws against extortion, theft and slavery, yet with a single vote, we can legally plunder our neighbor’s bank account without impunity and place him and his heirs into a position of involuntary servitude. Many of our retirees have found that even after working all their lives to pay off the mortgage on the cottage or family farm, there is still a yearly rent that must be paid. To refuse to pay will result in the confiscation and eviction of the supposed owner and the transfer of the property to a new "owner" who is more, shall we say, civic minded." http://voteno43410.webs.com/comm...

kal-el

Time to read the Constitution. It doesn't take a vote of the people to raise taxes. The only reason we do it that way now is because our politicians are cowards.

Bherrle

Spot on kal-el.

donutshopguy

Today we can't control the unbridled spending of the federal, state and county governments. The increase in taxes from all three without public vote is very evident.

But, today we still have the right to control our local quasi government institutions like schools.

Analysis your present financial situation. Analysis your future financial situation.

Both sides have made very valid points. Both are presenting only the information that fit their their ideology. You have to sift through that information for the truth.

Make your decision that fits your needs now and in the future.

EZOB

donutshopguy,
Your comments are usually pretty much right on. Consider this! It's very obvious that you keep up with the news and what is going on. All you need to do is ask yourself, How much more am I willing to pay or maybe how much can I afford to pay? Is the hard earned money I'm giving being well spent? These are just a few of the many questions we can ask ourselves before voting. Cast your ballot and be ready to vote again in three months.

Pirate Mom

School systems don't get cost of living. Any raise comes on the base pay through negotiations with the board. Our teachers and staff have taken pay freezes for years and every year have paid more of their insurance premiums as the board has changed the insurance packages for all to be more fiscally responsible. I've learned this by attending most board meetings for the past 10 years because I want my taxes used to educate kids. Although open enrollment has affected our Ohio report card, the revenue has offset our lack of paying additional levies that have been defeated. It's time to vote yes on August 6.

DLK

Gunner has repeatedly said open enrollment has not affected the report card. You've been "effective" well before open enrollment.

My question is...did they take step freezes?

Lil DAB

"PirateMom"- You said, "Our teachers and staff have taken pay freezes for years and every year have paid more of their insurance premiums"...
So has nearly every other working individual that I know! Taxes have increased, insurance premiums have skyrocketed, companies pay less if any of the premiums and wages have flatlined! But no one is trying to get someone else to pass a tax to help my pocketbook and I don't have extra donate to yours/theirs!

samiam

And the cost of insurance is going to be even more next year when Obamacare goes into effect. More dollars coming out of workers' pockets.

Tool Box

It appears that Pirate Mom feels the teachers should be exempt from the growing pains that we all go through! Makes me wonder if she indeed is one of them! "One of them"! "one of them"! "one of them"! Look for the Kool-aid mustache and the foil hat in her foreign car!

Lil DAB

lolol "One of them"! "one of them"! "one of them"! the movie "Freaks?" lmao!

Tool Box

Move to Perkins and help us pay taxes!

Pirate Mom

I do live in Perkins. I drive a Ford. I am voting yes for the levy. What I've stated are facts, previously and now. KoolAid is bad for you. I have a Masters' degree and get paid for my work. So should our teachers. VOTE YES AUGUST 6. I do not name call...just tell the truth. You can't fight my facts so you use derogatory language. I think I make you nervous.

donutshopguy

If I could control where my tax money was spent on the federal, state and local level I would be funneling more to my local area. That means schools, police and other local institutions. But, I don't have that choice. My taxes get redistributed by those politicians we have elected. And in most cases not to where I want.

If you gave most American the ability to control where their tax dollars are spent I don't believe you would have a problem with funding schools.

It's my money and I want to decide where it goes. I have no trust in our present political system.

donutshopguy

As a former "spin doctor" of information I would like to commend the school system on their $730 dollar activity fee. They have zeroed in on what drives this community.

It's not education. It's about Johnny and Susie playing with a ball or a musical instrument.

On the other hand, I would have not have made it so easy to access the salaries of those employed by the school system. You have created a situation where anyone making less than school employees become resentful and are apt to vote "no" for only that reason. That information should be available to the public just don't present it on a platter.

Bherrle

DSG,

Respectfully, on the issue of sharing the salary info, I think they are in a no win situation. If they don't openly share it, they will be criticized for trying to hide something, not being forthcoming, or not promoting information that doesn't help the levy.

As I understand it, the history of this school district (going back to the 70's) has been that they have always been criticized for poor communication. In my research and educating myself about the last 5-7 years, I've found that they have been open. But still, some say they have secret agenda's, they won't listen to the public, or that the open meetings are just a sham so that they can say they involved the public, etc. So it seems on an even larger scale, they can't win. No matter what they do, they are being criticized.

Is it that the district is not communicating, is it that we as the public aren't listening/don't want to listen (already have our minds made up), or is it something in the middle? I'd be interested in your take on that.

I agree that unfortunately, some will vote no because of the salary info. I am perfect example of a person making less than the average school teacher. In no way, shape, or form do I feel it is right for me to vote no simply because I make less than they do. If I want that job, at that pay, then I should get the education required, apply for the job, put in the time (years) to get up to that average salary level, and maintain/enhance my education along the way.

Tool Box

The way I look at it, I have one kid in school, she plays two sports and only has one year left. I will gladly pay $1400 for her two sports instead of $7300 in additional taxes over ten years. Heck, I have to send her to college yet!

When voting, look at how many teachers that don't live in our district and don't help pay our taxes but reap the rewards of a huge salary thanks to us. Make them move into OUR tax district!

When voting, remember the shell game that Gunner played with our money against our will. And he also does not help us pay taxes in Perkins Township, he lives in Oregon!

In the long run, Perkins will be a ghost town if this levy passes. People will move out, houses will be hard to sell due to the high taxes. Businesses will think twice before building in Perkins and will probably build in Sandusky. If you don't think the City of Sandusky is sitting on the sidelines rooting for this levy to pass, then you are blind. They have a lot to gain if our levy passes. Lower taxes in Sandusky will attract more residents and businesses to Sandusky and away from Perkins. By this happening, the taxes in Perkins will have to continue to go up in order to run the Township at status quo with less tax base. Do you really want this to happen. Do the math, it's pretty simple.

VOTE NO!

Tool Box

Sorry, I almost forgot........ Paid for by citizens who want to be able to afford to stay in their Perkins Township home!

Tool Box

VOTE NO!

Lil DAB

✰LIKE

Bherrle

Tool Box,

$7,300 over 10 years is $730 per year, which would be the annual tax increase on a $350,000 home. That may be your home, just verifying you have the math right. If it is, congrats on having a very nice home.

How many teachers countywide, statewide, countrywide, live in the district they teach in? I would ask why that matters? If they don't live in Perkins, then they pay a higher tax rate where they live. They are not the highest paid teachers even within Erie County, let alone statewide. It's not like they are being paid bucket loads more than another district. Why limit the talent pool by making residency a requirement?

There was no shell game. You may disagree with the millage movement, but it was done to ensure that PI funds where available, whatever direction that takes. It was done after three public meetings, that were very poorly attended. It was the best long-term financial option available. Had they not done so, we would not be on the ballot for a levy right now, but we also would have very little to no money set aside to address facility needs. The facilities have to be addressed in some way, they can't be ignored. Does anyone not agree with that? If the board did that, they'd be criticized for that too, so again, they are damned if they do, damned if they don't. Do we really expect them to address facility issues, without an increase in taxes, in some way?

A lot of people are taking the position that the millage was moved so that the BOE and Dr. Gunner can do what they want with buildings. Not true. They've already stated that no decision will be made on the facilities direction until after the November BOE election. If new members get elected, then they will have the chance to get up to speed and present options.

Dr. Gunner pays a higher tax rate in Oregon, OH , than he would if he lived in Perkins.

I have the opposite outlook you do on the fate of the levy. If the levy passes, we will still be among the lowest tax rates in the county. We'll still be lower than Sandusky (who, by the way, rarely ever has trouble getting a levy passed, why is that?) If lower taxes were going to cause a massive population shift, why isn't that happening now out of Sandusky into Perkins?

Ghost town is a risk if the levy fails, in my opinion. The districts programs start to decline. Open enrollment becomes less attractive to outside residents. Revenues start to decline. Programs continue to get cut, the snowball picks up speed. People are less likely to move into the district for the schools. Open enrollment numbers continue to drop. Revenues continue to drop. Home sales suffer, property values decline. Revenues drop even farther. Homes stay on the market for extended periods of time.

It's really not that simple, it's a complex problem. I certainly don't have all the answers, I sure wish I did. But I do know this. It would be much easier for this BOE and Supt to avoid much of the public criticism by doing nothing, by not asking for a tax increase. Let it be the problem of a future group of BOE members, and a future Supt. Sure, some of us would be yelling at them for doing nothing, but that number would be a lot fewer than are yelling at them now. Tax increases have a tendency to bring out the criticism.

They are trying to do the responsible thing, and plan for the future. Do we really think the school district can sustain forever, with no future tax increases?

Centauri

Questions to the pro school levy voters. The opposed can answer too.

How much money does the school district get from the sports program? That would include ticket sales, grants, sport boosters and so forth.

I have posted often about the low property values in Erie County, Ohio and in Perkins Township. Instead of asking the taxpayers for more money, why not contest some of the property values that appear to be too low? The Perkins School District went after and challenged some property values in the past. Not all of the challenged properties were reported in the newspapers.

http://www.morningjournal.com/ar...
"Perkins Local Schools will contest the property value the county auditor's office set for Kyklos Bearings International Inc."

Resident51

I believe they pay an attorney to contest commercial property only, not residential or agricultural. What was the outcome of KBI?

Centauri

Due to time, I am not able to find out about the outcome of KBI.

Below is the Erie County, Ohio auditor's information.
I see that KBI bought the property for $25,500,000 (2008).
The present valuation is $10,809,780, down from the 2012 valuation of $25,500,000 (2012). Check the tax page for penalties and delinquent taxes.

http://erie.iviewauditor.com/Dat...

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