By RYAN SCOTT OTTNEY
PDT Staff Writer
FRANKLIN FURNACE — Two months ago, Green Superintendent Sandra Mers predicted voters in the March election would support a 7-mill, $475,000 property tax levy for emergency operations. Unfortunately, that was not so.
Voters on Tuesday denied the Green School levy with a 684-660 vote. Absentee votes are not included, however, and will be counted when the election results are certified in 10 days.
Mers warned in the months leading to the election that without the levy support the district would have to cut further to the state minimum levels.
“We have a loss of revenue with the continued cuts, and to remain status quo if you look at our five-year forecast we just need operating revenue. It’s not for a special program. No new hires, nothing like that. In fact, through attrition at the end of this year there will be 17.5 positions that have been eliminated through attrition since 2006,” she said.
Following the final count Tuesday, Mers was disappointed.
“We were planning on this to pass, so we are going to have to reconvene and make those tough decisions,” she said.
In November 2010, by a vote of 442-1,039, voters rejected a $1 million general operations levy for the Green School District. Mers remained focused on the positive Tuesday evening, pointing out how much better the district did this year; and she said they will be back on the ballot to try again later this year.
“I’m thrilled with the amount of support from staff and community, because researching past elections this was close. The amount of support we have gained has been tremendous. We have to look at the bright side,” Mers said.
According to the district, if it had passed, a local property valued at $200,000 would have paid an extra $490 each year — or $1.34 a day. At the lower end, a property valued at $25,000 would have paid an extra $61.25 each year — or 17 cents a day.
Ryan Scott Ottney can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 235, firstname.lastname@example.org.