Voters defeat permanent improvement levy


By Melanie Speicher - [email protected]



Sidney City Schools Superintendent John Scheu looks over the latest school levy results at the board of elections Tuesday, Aug. 2.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney City Schools Director of Operations and Technology Eric Finke, left, of Sidney, and Sidney City Schools Treasurer Mike Watkins, of Anna, tabulate school levy results at the Board of Elections Tuesday, Aug. 2.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

SIDNEY — For the second time this year, registered voters in the Sidney City School District defeated a 3-mill 5-year permanent improvement levy. The latest defeat came after the special election on Tuesday, Aug. 2.

With an unofficial vote tally of 1,472 (45 percent) for and 1,739 (55 percent) against, members of the board of education will return to the drawing board to determine the path to take for the November election. A special meeting will be held at 7 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 4, at the board of education office to discuss the results.

“I’m disappointed,” said Superintendent John Scheu. “I’d like to thank the people who voted and supported the levy. But the problems don’t go away.”

The levy passed in five precincts — Sidney 1st Ward B, Sidney 1st Ward C, Sidney 2nd Ward B, Sidney 2nd Ward C and Franklin Township. During the March election, the levy passed in only three precincts.

“We’re going to look and see where we failed,” said Board President Bill Ankney, “and get feedback on where we failed. People don’t want new taxes and we appreciate that.”

Ankney said the carryover balance is something people don’t understand and the board needs to find a way to explain the function of the balance.

Scheu thanked everyone who served on the levy committee for their hard work during the campaign.

“A number of people worked their tails off to bring the district up from where it was six years ago,” said Scheu. “I don’t want to be the superintendent to see it taken back to where we were six years ago. We will continue to be frugal with the district’s money. We’ll have to look at the results Thursday and see where we want to go from here.”

Scheu expressed his appreciation for Ken McElroy, who served as campaign chairman, and Jayne Smith, who was the levy treasurer, and all he other people who “put in a whole lot of time into this effort.”

“I’d like to thank that volunteers that helped,” said McElroy. “Also, the committee and the donors who supported us financially for the campaign and the district staff.”

The proposed levy would have generated $105 annually on a property valued at $100,000 had it been approved. A PI levy can only be used for the purchase of items which have a life of more than five years such as school buses and computers and repairs and improvements to the district’s building. A PI levy cannot be used to pay for salaries or benefits for the district’s employees.

Of the 13,857 registered voters in the school district, only 3,226 (23.28 percent) went to the polls Tuesday to cast their votes. Results by precinct are:

Sidney 1st Ward A, 39 for the levy; 78 against the levy

Sidney 1st Ward B, 168 for the levy, 100 against the levy

Sidney 1st Ward C, 234 for the levy, 137 against the levy

Sidney 2nd Ward A, 41 for the levy, 70 against the levy

Sidney 2nd Ward B, 131 for the levy, 94 against the levy

Sidney 2nd Ward C, 85 for the levy, 72 against the levy

Sidney 2nd Ward D, 76 for the levy, 108 against the levy

Sidney 3rd Ward A, 14 for the levy, 92 against the levy

Sidney 3rd Ward B, 78 for the levy, 115 against the levy

Sidney 4th Ward A, 41 for the levy, 52 against the levy

Sidney 4th Ward B, 62 for the levy, 79 against the levy

Sidney 4th Ward C, 77 for the levy, 100 against the levy

Sidney 4th Ward D, 137 for the levy, 143 against the levy

Clinton Township, 64 for the levy, 69 against the levy

Franklin Township, 43 for the levy, 35 against the levy

Salem Township E, 27 for the levy, 108 against the levy

Salem Township W, 75 for the levy, 130 against the levy

Orange Township, 80 for the levy, 154 against the levy

Logan County, 0 for the levy, 3 against the levy

According to Chris Gibbs, Shelby County Board chairman, there are 12 absentee ballots to be counted and 32 provisional votes to be considered. The board will meet Monday, Aug. 15, at 7 a.m. to certify the vote.

“We’ll also open any additional absentee ballots that come in during the next 10 days,” said Gibbs. “Well look at the eligibility of the provisional ballots.”

Gibbs said there were no problems reported during the election.

“I’d like to thank Emerson Electric who provided a temporary air conditioner for the beige building at the fairgrounds,” he said.

Sidney City Schools Superintendent John Scheu looks over the latest school levy results at the board of elections Tuesday, Aug. 2.
http://sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_SDN080316SchoolLevy2.jpgSidney City Schools Superintendent John Scheu looks over the latest school levy results at the board of elections Tuesday, Aug. 2. Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney City Schools Director of Operations and Technology Eric Finke, left, of Sidney, and Sidney City Schools Treasurer Mike Watkins, of Anna, tabulate school levy results at the Board of Elections Tuesday, Aug. 2.
http://sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_SDN080316SchoolLevy1.jpgSidney City Schools Director of Operations and Technology Eric Finke, left, of Sidney, and Sidney City Schools Treasurer Mike Watkins, of Anna, tabulate school levy results at the Board of Elections Tuesday, Aug. 2. Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

By Melanie Speicher

[email protected]

Reach the writer at 937-538-4822; follow her on Twitter @MelSpeicherSDN. Follow the SDN on Facebook, www.facebook.com/SidneyDailyNews.

Reach the writer at 937-538-4822; follow her on Twitter @MelSpeicherSDN. Follow the SDN on Facebook, www.facebook.com/SidneyDailyNews.

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