The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper


       The Benton-Carroll-Salem school board will hold two public meetings to discuss the school system’s financial situation and the board’s decision to place two tax levies on the May 8 ballot.

        The meetings will be held Feb. 26 at 6 p.m. and March 22 at 5:30 p.m. at the Oak Harbor High School auditorium.

        Board members cite the recent property devaluation of the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station as the primary reason the district needs additional tax revenues; the resulting annual loss to the district from the devaluation is about $4.6 million, about a fourth of the B-C-S operating budget.

        However, the loss of reimbursement payments from the state – about $300,000 annually – that started when the public utility tangible personal property tax was phased out is also a factor, said Guy Parmigian, district superintendent.

        To recover those losses the board will place a 1 percent earned income tax on the ballot along with a 3.89-mill property tax that would generate about $1.98 million and $1.4 million a year respectively if passed. Both issues would be in effect for five years if approved.

        "It was staggering that at a meeting of state officials this past October, no one around the table could think of another school district in state history who has lost the magnitude of revenue that Benton-Carroll-Salem is losing.  Our loss of revenue is simply unprecedented,’’ said Parmigian.  

        The B-C-S board voted unanimously during a special meeting last week to place the levies on the ballot for voter approval.

        The income tax issue would be levied on wages and self-employment earnings of residents of the district. Interest, dividends, capital gains, pensions, rental income, lottery winnings and income earned by estates would be exempt from the tax.

        The property tax would cost about $136 per $100,000 of valuation for each parcel a year.

        Parmigian said property tax revenues from the Davis-Besse plant have been a pillar of the district’s finances since the plant began operations in the 1970s, which enabled successive school boards and administrations to place fewer issues on the ballot over the years.

        He credited the school board for being fiscally conservative, saying the board evaluates every vacancy that comes open due to retirement or resignation, and then makes a decision on replacing the position.

        Last summer, teaching positions, a maintenance position and a bus mechanic position were not filled for a savings of $406,000. 

        The efficiency measures will continue, Parmigian said, but a loss of $6 million annually in revenue means the district can’t cut its way out of the situation without hurting educational programs for students.  

        Last month, the board met with State Representative Steve Arndt and State Senator Randy Gardner in Columbus to discuss a draft plan for assistance from the state but learned it’s likely any help would only be for three years and cover just a fraction of the devaluation loss.

        Parmigian said more details on a plan will be available in the spring.

        Voters may consult the district's website at for more information about the tax issues on the May ballot or they may call Parmigian or treasurer Cajon Keeton with any questions about the issues at 419-898-6210.




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