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Cincinnati Public Schools asks voters to renew levy for 10 years

'Scuttlebutt' is wrong, board president says
Posted at 9:28 PM, Nov 01, 2019

CINCINNATI — School Board President Carolyn Jones says she hears the “scuttlebutt” on the street from people questioning the 10-year, $65 million renewal levy on the Nov. 5 ballot.

“I hear the scuttlebutt going on in the community, of whether we actually need this money,” Jones says.

But Jones says the funding is essential. Without it, cuts will be inevitable.

“If it doesn’t pass, we’re going to have to cut teachers. We’re going to have to cut paraprofessionals and other positions,” Jones said.

“I think we have to be real and face reality that in order to operate smoothly and in order to be just as efficient as we have, it is so important for us to pass this levy,” Jones said.

The head of the teachers union agrees.

RELATED: What CPS says about the levy

“I think everyone is pretty much in support of the levy,” said Julie Sellers, president of the Cincinnati Federation of Teachers.

“We have been educating people,” Sellers said. “You do hear a few people here and there that are disgruntled about taxes. But this will not raise their taxes and it is something that’s important to the whole district.”

Still, critics say Issue 12 - a 10-year renewal, as opposed to five years - takes away critical oversight by voters.

RELATED: What Ballotpedia.org says about the levy.

The community has already renewed this levy three times.

The levy would add $65 million to the district’s annual operating budget, funding things like curriculum, teacher pay and transportation.

“It’s really important that they continue to support the students in this district,” Sellers said. “The district is making many gains, but everything that you do costs money and people don’t understand the cost of education.”