Tax issues proposed by Clinton-Massie Local Schools and the Village of Blanchester both lost by wide margins — the percentage of votes against the issues tallying in the mid-60s in both cases.
Voters in the Clinton-Massie school district soundly defeated a proposed 5.8-mills property tax levy, 2,079 votes against and 1,207 votes for (63 percent against, 37 percent in favor).
After the votes were counted Tuesday night, Clinton-Massie Superintendent Matt Baker said, “I want to thank all the supporters of the school district past and present. We have heard the response from the CMLSD community. The administrators and board of education will work tirelessly to make sure we can provide the best education possible within our financial constraints.
“Now that this election time has passed I implore the people of the Clinton-Massie Local School District to take down their signs and come together in support of our first-class kids,” stated Baker. “Our goals have not and will not change. We will make Clinton-Massie Local Schools the Destination District of Southwest Ohio. We have the staff, students, and parents to make our goal a reality. As always … Go Falcons!”
In a News Journal election preview, Baker stated if the levy were to be voted down, the district would take a methodical approach to how it can eliminate expenditures. But apparently, staffing cuts are inevitable.
“Unfortunately we will have to reduce staffing to bridge the deficit gap that will exist,” Baker said in the preview.
The superintendent also has said if the levy did not pass, there would be a probable increase in the size of elementary classes, a slowdown in acquiring current technology, fees such as pay-to-play would rise, and updates to curriculum would become “stagnant.”
Elective programs outside the required state mandates will be reviewed for their ability to be solvent, Baker has indicated.
If the tax levy had been approved, the yearly tax for an owner of a $100,000 residential property in the district would have increased by $203. And the yearly tax for an owner of a $200,000 residential property would have, of course, increased by twice that if the levy had passed — $406.
The proposed Blanchester income tax was turned down, 541 votes against and 297 votes in favor (65 percent against, 35 percent for).
The proposed municipal tax was for a 1 percent tax on income, which in the language of the ballot was for extending and enlarging village services and facilities, capital improvements, maintenance, equipment, improving streets, hiring a village administrator, and the general municipal operations of the Village of Blanchester.
It would have been in effect for seven years, and would have begun on New Year’s Day 2018, and expired on New Year’s Eve 2024.
Voters in Washington Township approved a five-year, 0.85-mill additional tax levy for providing and maintaining fire protection. Township residents receive their fire protection from the Wilmington Fire Department, with which the township has a contract for that purpose.
In approving the property tax levy, the owner of a $100,000 residential property in the township will pay an additional estimated amount of $29.75 per year.
The vote was 241 for the fire levy (58 percent), 175 against (42 percent).
The Village of Midland had two tax levies on the ballot, and voters passed both: A five-year, 3-mills levy renewal for current expenses was approved 19-9; and a five-year levy replacement for police protection was approved 20-8.
Voters in Clark Township (including the Village of Martinsville) decidedly passed a five-year, 0.7-mill levy renewal for providing and maintaining fire protection. The unofficial vote totals are 195 for the levy (72 percent) and 77 against (28 percent).
Voters in Richland Township (including the Village of Sabina) by a wide margin approved a five-year, 1-mill levy renewal for maintaining and operating cemeteries. The unofficial vote totals are 424 for the levy (72 percent) and 165 against the levy (28 percent).
The local tax levy that did the best Tuesday was the Wayne Township five-year, 1-mill levy renewal for maintaining and operating cemeteries. The unofficial vote totals there show 80 percent in favor and 20 percent against (120 for the levy, and 30 against).
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.