Johnstown-Monroe Local Schools
Income tax returns to Nov. 6 ballot
The Johnstown Monroe school board on Aug. 1 approved ballot language to place the district's 1-percent income tax on the November ballot.
District treasurer Tammy Woods said the income tax, which has been in effect since Jan. 1, 2004, would raise $2,249,206 annually.
"It's a significant portion of our budget," she said.
Woods said the existing income tax will expire Dec. 31, 2013. If voters approve November's ballot, the income tax would become effective Jan. 1, 2014.
Board member Jim Dodderer emphasized that income tax approval in November would change nothing for the district's taxpayers.
"It's nothing new," he said. "It's already there. It's just a renewal, so there's no new money coming out of their paycheck."
The district also has a 9.6-mill emergency levy set to expire next year. Although it won't appear on the ballot this November, Woods said, the emergency levy will appear as a ballot issue fairly soon.
She said the district's emergency levy raises $2.2 million per year. The district's budget is $14 million, she said. The income tax and emergency levy combined raise roughly $4.4 million, constituting almost one-third of the district's overall budget, she said. She reiterated that only the income tax would appear on this November's ballot, not the emergency levy.
In other district news, Woods said Johnstown-Monroe administrators would meet with Northridge administrators soon to discuss busing for students who live within the Northridge and Johnstown-Monroe districts but attend private schools. The J-M board on July 18 voted to rescind a resolution declaring transportation of students to nonpublic schools as impractical. However, Johnstown Monroe and Northridge cooperatively transport nonpublic school students, and Northridge is in the process of changing its transportation policies, Woods said, so it's important for the districts to meet soon to discuss the situation.
Woods said the less busing of nonpublic school students Northridge provides, the more transportation Johnstown-Monroe might be forced to take over.
Northridge treasurer Britt Lewis said that thus far, Northridge has committed to transporting only Granville Christian Academy students. The district might transport St. Francis, Blessed Sacrament and Newark Catholic students but for now, he said, the district has committed to only Granville Christian Academy and that Northridge currently has no transportation agreement with Johnstown-Monroe.
"We're very open to continue discussions with (Johnstown-Monroe)," Lewis said. "We've had ongoing communication all summer."
Lewis said the two districts initially discussed meeting Aug. 6 but that Northridge would need to change that date.