Westerville CIty School District voters said "yes" to a combined 1.95-mill bond and 5.9-mill operating levy on the Nov. 5 ballot.
Greg Viebranz, Westerville schools communications director, said the schools had poll runners and declared victory about 9:45 p.m. Nov. 5. According to final unofficial results from the Franklin County Board of Elections, the levy was approved by a vote of 11,977 (52%) in favor to 11,055 (48%) against.
“It was a good effort,” said John Kellogg, district superintendent. “In general, I was optimistic. We had a good story to tell. We’re very appreciative of the people who came and listened to the story and decided to support us. We know it was a lot to ask. We appreciate the people willing to support it. We look forward to what comes next.”
The combined issue is estimated to cost homeowners an additional $274.75 annually per $100,000 in property valuation.
The bond issue will provide funding for a new middle school, a new elementary school, safety and security updates districtwide, renovations and additions at Annehurst and Whittier elementary schools, renovations at Hawthorne Elementary School and address facilities assessment needs at Hanby, Emerson and Longfellow elementary schools.
District treasurer Nicole Marshall said the operating levy would fund items for the general operations of the district.
She said the operating levy is estimated to generate about $15.6 million annually for the general fund while the bond will generate $103 million for the building projects.
Kellogg said, simply put, Issue 8 was about providing space for kids, safety for kids and success for kids.
Westerville's police, court facility will be realized with Issue 29
Westerville voters selected two fresh faces for city council and voted to upgrade police and court facilities this November.
Voters approved Issue 29, a 20-year, 0.96-mill bond issue to upgrade police and court facilities in Westerville.
According to final unofficial results from the Franklin County Board of Elections, the levy was approved with 7,430 votes (63%) to 4,275 votes (37%) with all 25 precincts reporting.
City manager David Collinsworth said the city is thankful for the community's support and approval of the issue is “a win for public safety.”
“We are thankful for the support and trust of the residents as they considered this bond for the next 20 years," he said. "This means in the near future, we can plan to house our entire law-enforcement division in one building and create a more functional, safer place for the operation of the mayor’s court. This vote will ensure adequate space for officer training, office space, storage and community use for the long-term."
The bond will cost $33.60 annually per $100,000 of property valuation starting in 2021 intended for the purpose of funding the consolidation of Westerville's police and mayor's court operations, now in three buildings, into one facility. Estimated costs for the project are about $15 million, according to the city website.
The concept was planned for a number of reasons, but the primary reason is because the police division has outgrown its 30-year-old building, according to the site.
City Council: Treneff, Wright, Conley to continue stints
Craig Treneff, Kenneth Wright and Diana Conley won the race for three seats on Westerville City Council.
Treneff is the only incumbent who chose to run this fall.
According to final unofficial results from the Franklin County Board of Elections, Treneff led the field with 6,498 votes (25%); followed by Conley 5,678 (22%), Wright 5,572 (21%), Aileen Wagner 5,090 (20%) and Doug Rankin, 3,149 (12%), with 14 precincts reporting.
-- Olivia Minnier
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