Conotton Valley board votes to place 4-mill levy on Nov. 5 ballot

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By Jacquie Humphrey 

CCM Correspondent

Conotton Valley Board of Education members unanimously agreed to place a 4-mill tax levy on the Nov. 5 general election ballot during a June 27 special meeting. 

The board met in an early morning session to address the issue of placing an additional tax levy for the purpose of permanent improvements.

All members were in attendance and voted in favor of the proposed 4-mill levy. Board President Kevin Willoughby read a statement from the board citing the failure of Rover Pipeline’s financial promise to both local governments and school districts as the reason for the needed levy monies.

A statement provided by Superintendent John Zucal advised the 4-mill levy is anticipated to generate $1,602,000 annually for the district, which will cost taxpayers with a real estate valuation of $100,000 approximately $11.67 monthly. 

Zucal further said annual payments for the Rocket Center cost the district $1,500,000. He noted this levy is for permanent improvements, such as the Rocket Center, and not operating expenses. 

Willoughby and Zucal, both reiterated the district’s recent progress in academics with Zucal saying, “Our district has demonstrated a dedication to excellence with our amazing students and staff excelling in the classroom…”. 

Willoughby said, “There is clear evidence that our school district is soaring. Our district had the highest increase in Performance Index on the State’s Report Card of any public school district in Ohio.”  

In other discussion, Brittany O’Hara was present at the meeting. The board unanimously voted to hire her as the district’s art teacher for grades K through 12. 

O’Hara’s husband, Derek, Conotton’s reading specialist, accompanied her to the meeting along with their three young daughters. O’Hara comes to Conotton from Canton City schools.

The board also approved the summer employment of Dylan Higgenbotham and approved Rob Higgenbotham as a volunteer boys junior high basketball coach. 

The next regular meeting of the Conotton Valley Board of Education is scheduled July 17 at 7 p.m. in the conference room.  

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