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Last word against United bond issue

October 29, 2011
Morning Journal News


It is disheartening to see just how far the United Local administration, school board and committee members are willing to go to try and get their levy passed. Obtain a politician to write and speak for them, hire an expressive consultant to tell them how to do their job, and acquire a multi-millionaire from Salem, for his money and name. Of the three only the politician has a legitimate reason to get involved. He lives within the United Local District.

Representatives of United Local have acquired absentee ballot applications and are sending them home with students, passing them out to neighbors and friends, only if they would vote for their levy. How low. Mr. Logan's letter of Sept. 27 was chalk full of numbers and information, yet failed miserably to address the district's problems, jobs, foreclosures, unemployment and financial instability in the area.

The Morning Journal had an article on property values declining. In it Shelly Wilson, executive administrator for the tax equalization at the Ohio Department of Taxation, stated, "What has been going on for the past three to four years has been unprecedented. I have never seen anything like it."

Property value is used to determine your taxes. School taxes make up a large bulk of our tax bill. If your property value declines, school taxes can be increased to compensate for the decreased value: Your school taxes will go up. Drive around United's area and you will see the foreclosures already in place and increasing. Look at how these un-kept properties are affecting the value of properties around them.

Oct. 1: front page Morning Journal "ESC anticipates changes coming to education." Richard Stoudt, president of ESC and former board member of United states, "Obviously we're going to have to look outside the educational box to survive." ESC Superintendent Anna Marie Vaughn attended a statewide educational conference where the keynote speaker stressed the importance for school districts to share services and resources if they plan to survive. Ohio is losing enrollment in its schools overall and tax dollars are declining. In the near future schools will be ranked 1 to 609, not rated as they are now. Considered in the school's ranking is the district's economic efficiency, how much is actually being spent on classroom instruction, teachers and technology instead of administration, transportation, etc.

In closing, it was brought to my attention that the multi-millionaire from Salem has donated substantial financial support to pass this levy. May I suggest with all his effort and millions he just write a check for the $9 million needed for the school. Claim it for taxes. The United Local administrators get their way and the voters would be exuberantly happy for this gracious and unselfish gift.

Karen Griffith




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