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The Suburbanite
  • More money won’t solve school problems

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  • Coventry Local School District taxpayers, please do your civic duty and vote Feb. 5 on the levy/bond issue.
    The district is trying to acquire $39 million in funding ($28 million would be provided by us taxpayers) so it can operate more efficiently.
    I am voting no on the issue, and you should consider doing the same.
    We already supply a healthy amount of money to the district. Fifty-seven percent of my already too-high property tax bill goes to the school district. If this passes, it will increase.
    Taxpayers in general are a lot worse off than they were 10 years ago. Sure, our trash bills might be lower today, but that's one of the few bright areas. Our deductions for health insurance are up 56 percent in the last five years and we are paying more for co-pay and deductibles. Northeast Ohio has been losing jobs since 2000, with it being especially worse after 2007. And, those still with jobs have seen reductions in their wages around 4 percent, on average. Summit County has worse numbers than these.
    Coventry Schools management has noted that all the current buildings have leaky roofs, outdated windows with poor sealing capability, old hard-to-replace-parts boilers, hot water heaters, bad plumbing and a host of other issues. If things are really this bad, any taxpayer has to question where all their many years of sizeable tax bill support has gone. Instead of setting aside enough money for maintenance, have too many dollars gone into administration, too-generous pension and health benefits programs and other areas?
     Yes, the state has taken funding to the schools down and has created an uneven playing field for all schools. I am distressed about this like anyone else in the state, but I can't pay the state’s share.
    The districts problems will not be resolved by us simply handing over more money. We have far too many school districts in Ohio. We have far too many separate administrative groups and buildings (many of them being quite aged) that are left for the taxpayers to pay more to cover the costs. This might be a good time to consider consolidation with other school districts instead of just throwing more money at the problem.  
    Enough is enough.
    Dick Edwards
    New Franklin