I am writing in support of Issue 59, the Westerville City School District's substitute emergency operating levy on the Nov. 8 ballot.

To the Editor:

I am writing in support of Issue 59, the Westerville City School District's substitute emergency operating levy on the Nov. 8 ballot.

This is not a new tax. However, if voters do not renew the levy, the district stands to lose $16.5 million per year. Voters approved a 6.71-mill levy in March 2012 that expires in December 2017.

Over that time, the district has been able to restore programs and services, including transportation, and provide relief to families by reducing or eliminating fees for athletics and other extracurriculars.

Westerville has been a sound steward of public funds in creating a $19 million reserve for unforeseen fiscal emergencies. The state auditor, Standard and Poor's and Moody's have all recognized the district's efforts to manage tax dollars.

Renewing the levy keeps the district on the right path and delays the need to seek additional tax dollars. Your investment will ensure a strong future.

I urge residents of the Westerville City School District to vote for Issue 59 on Nov. 8.

Richard Lewis

executive director, Ohio School Boards Association