Johnstown Independent

Northridge levy

Emphasis: Renewal is not a tax increase

By

Northridge Local School District residents will decide a renewal operating levy in the May 6 election.

The district has proposed a five-year, 8.8-mill levy for emergency requirements.

Money generated from the levy would amount to $2.1 million out of a $12 million annual budget, Superintendent Chris Briggs said.

He said the renewal levy would not cost residents any additional taxes. It is for an effective rate of 8.8 mills. If approved, it would continue to cost homeowners $269.50 annually per $100,000 of assessed property value, according to the Licking County Auditor's Office.

Money from the levy would be used for the day-to-day operations of the district to pay for teachers in the classrooms, technology, textbooks and utilities.

Briggs said the renewal is critical to maintain the positive momentum within the district.

In June 2013, Northridge was removed from fiscal caution by the Ohio Department of Education as a result of the district working hard to live within its means, Briggs said.

He said he knows many residents are struggling financially, and that's why the school board made the levy request as lean as possible -- a renewal levy that wouldn't increase taxes but would provide students with the ongoing resources they need to succeed.

Also on the ballot

in Licking County

Voters throughout Licking County will decide a statewide issue and two county levy requests.

State Issue 1 would allow Ohio to generate $1.875 billion over a 10-year period in bonds to replace roads, bridges and other public infrastructure, according to The Columbus Dispatch.

It is a continuation of a program created through a voter-approved constitutional amendment in 1987, according to The Dispatch.

The countywide levy requests are for the board of developmental disabilities and the soil and water conservation district.

The Licking County Board of Developmental Disabilities is asking voters for a replacement levy totaling 1.6 mills.

The board's 1.3-mill continuing levy was placed on the ballot with a request for an additional 0.3 mill.

If approved, the 1.6-mill replacement levy would generate about $6 million per year and cost county homeowners $56 per year per $100,000 of assessed property valuation.

Jim Kiracofe, program administrator for the Licking County Soil and Water Conservation District, said the conservation district's 0.15-mill, five-year levy would generate almost $565,000 per year to support small-farm owners and help to develop community gardens.

If it is approved, the cost for county homeowners would be about $5.25 per year per $100,000 of assessed property valuation.

Among the party-specific races, registered Republicans will decide their November commissioner candidate from among Rick Black, Mike Fox and Doug Kanuckel.

The winner will advance to the general election Nov. 4 against Democrat Mark Van Buren and Libertarian James Snedden. Van Buren and Snedden are unopposed in the primary.

The commissioner seat up for election is held by Republican Doug Smith, who will retire at the end of his term after serving since 2005.

In addition, Republican voters in the 71st Ohio House District, which includes the Johnstown area, will choose the party's candidate in the November general election.

The primary candidates are James W. Cannon and Scott K. Ryan. The winner will face Democrat Ann Rader on Nov. 4. Rader is running unopposed in the primary.

Jay Hottinger (R-Newark), the current 71st District representative, has reached the term limit of eight consecutive years in that position.

The 71st District includes about two-thirds of Licking County.

Democrat voters will decide a gubernatorial primary race between Larry Ealy and Edward FitzGerald.

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