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Thursday, February 16, 2006

School officials seek 1-mill levy renewal on May 2 ballot

by Emily Canning-Dean,
Bedford Times Register

Bedford Ñ Voters in the Bedford City School District will have to decide in May whether or not to renew a permanent improvement levy.

Public Relations Coordinator Margaret Bierman said the levy was first instated in 1986, and funds from the levy are used to purchase equipment and make repairs on buildings and other school property. The levy must be renewed every five years.

“It’s not going to mean any additional taxes for our residents,” said Board President Joe Mestnik. “It is just a renewal.”

Treasurer Janet Pavlik said the levy is still considered a 1-mill levy, but residents are paying closer to .57 mills.

Pavlik said the levy was 1 mill when instated in 1986, but according to state law, the district can’t charge taxpayers any more for this specific levy than it did in the beginning.

Pavlik said the owner of a $100,000 pays approximately $57.50 a year.

“Because property value has gone up since then and taxpayers are paying the exact same amount, they will pay closer to .57 mills each,” Pavlik said.

Business Manager Jerry Zgrabik said the levy brings the district about $600,000 per year Ñ the same amount since 1986.

Zgrabik said the funding is needed to make necessary repairs to buildings. He said the district already has an idea what it might use the money for next year.

“The high school needs a new cooling tower, which is part of the air conditioning system,” Zgrabik said. “The current one is about 36 years old. The roof on the gymnasium at the high school also needs replaced.”

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