The replacement levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $27.81 a year more.
By NANCY TULLIS
VINDICATOR SALEM BUREAU
COLUMBIANA -- As voters go to the polls today, the Columbiana Board of Education is looking ahead to February.
The board will vote Wednesday to place a 1.6-mill, permanent improvement replacement levy on the ballot for a February 2002 special election.
Schools Superintendent Dr. Joseph Rottenborn said the permanent improvement levy currently in effect is a five-year levy first passed in 1987. It has been renewed three times since then and generates about $120,000 annually, he said.
Rottenborn said the replacement levy would generate about $192,000.
Cost: Treasurer Lori Posey said the owner of a $100,000 home in the district pays $27.81 a year under the current levy. If voters pass the replacement levy, that same homeowner will pay an additional $21 a year, she said.
Over the years, Rottenborn said, levy revenue has been used for new textbooks, computers, desks, floor tile and other items. Permanent improvement money cannot be used to pay salaries or benefits, he emphasized.
Rottenborn said permanent levy millage is set to raise a specific dollar amount. The millage is then adjusted as property values change, he explained.
As property values increase, the millage of the permanent improvement levy is reduced, he said.
Property values: Since the current levy was first passed in 1987, the property values in Columbiana have increased, so the millage has been reduced from 1.6 mills to 0.9 mill, he said.
If the board opted to ask for renewal of the levy, the dollar amount raised would remain at about $120,000, and the millage would continue to be reduced as property values increase, he said.
He said one of the main reasons the board chose to replace the levy rather than seek a renewal is that there will likely be some major roof work on the horizon for the district.
Rottenborn said the board is facing major repair or replacement of the flat roofs of the Joshua Dixon Elementary and South Side Middle schools, and the cost for that work is uncertain.