Springfield schools seek bond issue again
By Ashley Luthern
The Springfield Board of Education voted this week to place a 2.5-mill bond issue before voters a second time.
The bond is aimed to secure part of the funding for a new $12.3 million kindergarten-through-fourth-grade school.
Of the total cost, 52 percent, or $6.4 million, would be borrowed by the local district through the bond issue, and the remaining 48 percent, or $5.9 million, would be paid by the state through the Ohio School Facilities Commission’s Exceptional Needs Program.
“A district can try three times within a 12-month period to put [the bond] on and then become a lapsed district. Then there’s no guarantee of state funding, though you can still reapply,” said Superintendent Debra Mettee.
The board voted unanimously to put it on the ballot again.
The bond issue will be one ballot item that consists of a 2.0-mill bond for 37 years and a 0.5-mill additional levy for 23 years for maintenance of the new building. The state requires local districts to include the additional maintenance levy to move forward with the bond issue, school officials have said.
If approved, the bond issue would cost $76.26 annually for the owner of a home valued at $100,000.
The bond issue’s defeat in November was the fourth consecutive time Springfield district voters turned down a bond issue. Four years earlier, the district placed a 7.1-mill combination bond issue/tax levy for new schools throughout the district, but that measure was defeated three times when on the ballot.
In November, about 55 percent of voters turned down the 2.5-mill bond issue.
The wood-frame elementary school that the district seeks to replace is on state Route 170 in New Middletown and was built in 1923. More than 400 students are taught at the school.