Resident outlines reasons to oppose school bond issue

Why I’m voting No for the School Levy.
(grab a tv dinner and have a seat, This is long and your local farmer will be bankrupt when this levy passes)
If you read nothing else…  read a copy of the Facilities Report done for each school (it is interesting, rates each building and details) – in summary, cost to renovate
Kenwood $6,884,389.41
Crim renovation $2,352,490.52, 
Conneaut renovation $8,246,096.24, 
BGMS renovation $2,347,767.79, 
BGHS renovation $23,770,311.45
(quick math-non common core- $20Mil before adding the High School, so $44Mil) If you keep reading, remember that number.
(off topic, where’s our extra million we were given in 2015 that no one can account for or why we went from excellent with distinguighment to C/D’s on report cards… jw)
We should be considerate of farmers, because, well I’m not a skinny chick who doesn’t like to eat, so I need farmers… cattle, pig, chickens, corn and the other healthy stuff you probably eat and I should eat. Yes Mom I’m eating my veggies!
Farm tax has increased almost 300% in FIVE YEARS! Agriculture will carry a HUGE BURDEN with this tax. THESE FARMERS, if they don’t go bankrupt, will now charge $1/tomato vs 3/$1, corn will be 2/$1 vs 8/$1, peppers, zucchini, beef, chicken, etc… we are a small town who support local. If I eat out, I hit a LOCALLY OWNED RESTAURANT, now let’s support our local farmers. WE ALL NEED FOOD!
Look at all the kids who have free/reduced lunches, look at those who are barely making it and need that free breakfast/lunch (at, Crim?) for help with 1-2 meals a day.
Income
-BG’s median housing cost is $154,000 (levy flyer used
$100k)
-Perrysburg’s median income is $75k, BG’s is $33k
(Crim gets free breakfast and lunch through a grant, I believe at least 90 percent of the school qualifies)
-We are the county seat with many county services, so we tend to attract lower income households who need services close by and have no vehicles
-What can our community afford? We are not Perrysburg – who will this hurt? Costs will be passed down to
renters and families who already struggle to keep their own homes in good repair
-BG families are cost-burdened when it comes to housing
Neighborhood Schools
-access via walking and biking (exercise, get to know  friends that walk together and other families, get out energy and ready to learn – read about Lakewood, save busing costs, not every parent in BG has a car),
Safe Routes to Schools –
$/creates culture that biking/walking is important to the district/city, walking school bus a sense of community smaller setting for learning and bonding with neighborhood
children/teachers/staff… TWENTY FIVE $K to fix sidewalks, etc to promote walk/bike to school. Why can’t we get this for our neighborhood school?
Traffic
-Extra traffic at this huge campus in an urban area – this
is not Otsego or a rual area
-Kids could be hit, mixed with less experienced high school
drivers
-Have any traffic studies been done? How will this internal
circulation be controlled for thousand of kids.
State money (OFCC)
-Articles state BG would get between 11 and 14 percent to
build (not sure exact amount) – this is millions of dollars
-I think 12% is the number being used, so that’s over $EIGHT MILLION we are turning down, if we can afford to turn that away, then feel free to remove my share of increased taxes, you don’t need it.
-Rules are to be followed and that is what we teach kids – if
you want a grant, you follow rules, you have to live within
a budget
Operating costs
These can be higher for new schools with larger building,
taller, more open designs. Some districts have had to
come back for more levies for operating – has this been
considered?
Mark my words, if this Levy gets passed, in a few years we will be forced in another levy for additional funding for this project… Remember about 7 years ago when they took away 5th grade camp and said, vote yes on next levy and we will give you back camp.
This Levy will not go away in 30 years, who remembers about 5 years ago we voted yes on a renewal levy, not a new tax they said, you are already paying this. Point of a 32year levy is that in 32 years… we are done paying it…. hook, line and sink… every time because who is going to be here in 32 years to remember this levy is now supposed to end… it will NEVER end.
I was actually in Gahana last week visiting a friend from college, he tells me since they purchased theirmhouse NOT even 10yr ago, they went from $1900 in taxes to $5500 in taxes… ($175k house) due to new schools and then all those extra costs!
Safety
All these kids in one spot seems dangerous these days if there were an act of violence – the “boots” aren’t going to stop a shooter at a playground or the famous bus/car line, unfortunately this is scary times we live in… don’t you dare say it won’t happen in BG… after I sponsored a BOOT to protect our kids – just in case. (look at what happened YESTERDAY IN NY-he choose Halloween because he knew a lot of people would be in one area)
Increase in $$
BG Independent News, 7/15/2016, BG School District Considers Building Options
Option – $54 – consolidation of elementaries, major renovations to the high school (now it’s like 72 Million on the Ballot) Option – $44 – new Conneaut, renovations to Kenwood, Crim and high school (I was for this one, offers improvements without totally killing the bank. but you know, the survey’s were inconclusive) ***happy medium for those who want compromise agreeing that we need something but not at the cost of bankruptcy
***** did you remember that number ??? this was an option at the beginning why not now?
“The consolidation would require more student busing, but it would mean the end of transporting students between school for special programs” “a citizen said that neighborhoods are strengthened by schools and removing them would hurt these area that City Council is looking to improve.” Scruci said “the schools should not be held responsible for propping up theneighborhoods”  (interesting, the other schools that were left, ended up being cleaned up by the city due to the deterioration and the concerns of neighbors, let’s teach our kids to be responsible for our communities which include neighborhoods, no one said it’s the school’s responsibility, but shifting away from this style does impact the future of our community,
kids should be taught to be civicly responsible again walking to school is not worth anything?)
Sentinel, 6/28/2016, BG community members lean toward consolidate elementary – Scruci said 100 percent of surveys were in favor of not taking state money” “96 percent were in favor of consolidating elementary” and “76 percent were in favor of building new versus renovating structures” 
*****FYI, I voted yes take state money on my survey-so it wasn’t 100%
BG Independent Media, 7/27/2017, BG School’s state scores are less than stellar – the latest test scores for the district looked dismal, with none of the grades meeting
state standards for English or math. 
Please look up the ODE and see where BG landed in scores…
I’m all for change, we need to do something and I TRULY applaud the school board for going out into the community and wanting the cream of the crop… but it’s not the best decision for ALL the residents who are burden with this increase
Thanks for hanging in there!
I got a lot more that this school district needs to work on before making me bankrupt but I’ll stop tonight. A lot to take in, I know…. but shouldn’t we all be informed?
Vicki Venn
Bowling Green
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