Editor’s note: In preparation for the Nov. 8 general election on which the Sidney City Schools has placed a permanent improvement levy, the Sidney Daily News will publish a weekly question dealing with the levy and what it means to the district. The questions and answers have been provided by the PI levy committee.
SIDNEY —On Nov. 8, 2016, Sidney City Schools will be asking voters to pass a deeply needed a 3.0 mill Permanent Improvement (PI) levy for five years to maintain current facilities and equipment. The district is making this request to the community because they want to keep students secure and comfortable in their learning environments and equip them with the technology and tools they need to be successful. At the same time, this levy will allow the district’s budget and operations to become even more effective and efficient.
In 2009, the Sidney City School Board allowed a .8 mill PI levy to expire, which had been renewed every five years since 1979; from 1969-1978, a 1.0 mill PI levy had been in place. Without a PI levy, permanent improvement expenses have been taken from the general fund. The passage of this levy will ensure that the district can maintain facilities, buses, textbooks and technology with minimal or no impact to the general fund.
Monies collected from the PI levy can only be used for facility repairs and upgrades, and cannot be used for salaries, wages or benefits. Examples of permanent improvements include building and grounds maintenance and upkeep, including roofs, bus maintenance and purchases, window replacements and upgrades, lockers, classroom furniture, boilers, water lines/plumbing, HVAC repairs and upgrades, electrical repairs and upgrades, brick and mortar, sidewalk and parking lot maintenance and repair, playground mulch, door upgrades, building security enhancements, indoor/outdoor lighting, sump pumps, carpet/floor tile, gutters, etc.
Directly related to learning, permanent improvement expenses also include textbooks and technology, including: computers, network infrastructure and switches, iPads, Chromebooks, etc.
More information and answers to other questions about the PI levy can be found on Citizens for Sidney Schools website at www.sidneyschoolslevy.org.