The Canfield Local Board of Education on Wednesday, Sept. 14 met and endorsed a plan to restore specific items in the daily operations of the school district should voters approve the November 2011 five-year operating levy.
With the failure of past levies and significant reductions in state funding, no new funds were available to the district for the entire 2011 school year. With the passage of an operating levy in November, the district would receive new local funds for 2012.
These new funds would allow the district to pay for and reinstate select programs and services that were previously reduced. Items that are slated for reinstatement include:
•Retain teacher positions that are scheduled to be eliminated in March 2012 that affect both course offerings and class size in grades kindergarten through 12.
Restore bus stop locations for students in grades kindergarten through 8 that better serve students and families.
•Restore transportation to allow CHS band members to travel to away games.
•Restore specific classified positions such as bus drivers.
This past summer, the district met with labor organizations to modify current contracts and mutually agreed to wage and salary step freezes and increased insurance premiums that resulted in savings of $1.9 million over the next three years. These concessions coupled with previous reductions (all totaling $3.7 million in savings) have allowed the board to lower the levy request to 4.9 mills.
In addition, a School Improvement Note from 1998 will be paid off allowing the school district to remove 2.5 mills from the tax duplicate over the next two years.
A five-year operating levy requesting 4.9 mills has been placed on the November 2011 ballot. The increase in taxes for 2012 will be $104.12 for the year (based on a $100,000 home). During the remaining four years, the tax increase for a $100,000 home will be reduced to $73.50 per year.