The levy will generate $777,653 per year and cost the owner of a $100,000 home $35 a year.
Voters in Tuesday's special election turned out in support of safety and security improvements for Summit County-based Green Local Schools, but dealt another setback to efforts to pass an operating levy for Portage County’s Waterloo Local School District.
With all precincts reporting, voters in the Green District passed a five-year additional safety and security levy for 1 mill, with 1,776 voting in favor and 1,105 against. The levy will generate $777,653 per year and cost the owner of a $100,000 home $35 a year.
The district, which overlaps into Stark County, had been eligible to participate in a similar levy effort spearheaded by the broader Stark Educational Service Center (ESC).
That 1.49-mill permanent levy appeared on track to fail Tuesday. It would have generated about $226 for each of the 44,000 students in the participating districts, or $9.75 million annually. Participating districts would have received the money based on their enrollment.
Green Superintendent Jeff Miller said the district opted out of the Stark ESC levy and pursued its own instead because of the difference in resources between the two counties.
It paid off.
“We’re excited that the community spoke, and now we’re going to be working hard to make sure [the upgrades] are in place for the start of the school year,” Miller said. “We just really appreciate the support ... This is a great day for our kids and certainly for making our schools safer.”
The Green levy will cover the cost of four additional school resource officers, two family support specialists, an elementary mental health professional and upgrades to safety and security infrastructure, which include lockdown kits in every classroom, alarms, sensors and cameras.
Miller said he anticipates having all the personnel in place by the beginning of the school year Aug. 22, along with some upgrades that will be visible on opening day. Upgrades will also continue throughout the year, Miller said.
Voters will have the option to renew the levy every five years.
In Portage County, Waterloo Local Schools’ additional 9.75-mill levy for current operating expenses failed 1,317-595.
If passed, the levy would have generated about $1.6 million a year for the district.
The district has been attempting to pass levies for additional money with no success since 2016.
Waterloo narrowly passed a renewal levy in May for 5.9 mills.