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Here’s proof that your one vote truly can make a difference

Published: Sun, June 2, 2013 @ 12:00 a.m.

Don’t even try to tell Brookfield Local Schools Superintendent Tim Saxton that each and every vote cast in a public election does not count. He’s armed with a quick and forceful rebuttal.

One voter in last month’s primary election tipped the balance between recovery and catastrophe for Saxton’s cash-strapped school district.

According to results certified last week by the Trumbull County Board of Elections, the district’s 4.85-mill additional, continuous levy passed by a mere one vote — 930 to 929.


The levy will raise $606,002 annually on a continuing basis, the first new operating money for schools that voters in Brookfield have approved in 20 years. Though the district remains in fiscal emergency, the new funds will provide a clear path toward fiscal stability.

That course would have been much more bumpy — and much less optimistic for the future of the school district — had one levy supporter had found some flimsy excuse to bypass the ballot box last May 7.

In a larger sphere, the Brookfield results illustrate the dynamic nature of democracy at the grass-roots level. Voting in local elections — though not nearly as sexy as voting in presidential contests — carries particularly strong impact because the results hit voters’ lives and pocketbooks directly. And that one vote can indeed be decisive.

Just ask Superintendent Saxton.


1Boar7734(66 comments)posted 3 years, 1 month ago

Last fall the Board members said the 1% income tax levy on residents would equal 9.13 mills on property tax. I supported this mill increase but suggest the Board respond why 4.85 mills vs the 9.13 mills the 1% income tax levy was to replicate. Will they be coming after another levy? Of course the alternative is to merge with Vienna that does not have a new school. Brookfield schools panders to the newspaper in Pa. with limited ongoing information reported to the local two Ohio newspapers. Many older and elderly residents may not have known much about this levy outside of school parents. Finally, had they tried to pass an income tax based upon "earned income tax base" vs what they tried to slide in of a "traditional tax base" that taxes income including pension, IRA distributiions, interest and dividends (social security excluded) the previous levy may have passed.

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