“Sustain Chagrin” Is The newest Levy proposed by the school board on September 22 that hopes to respond to financial worries families may have due to the covid-19 pandemic.

“Sustain Chagrin” Is The newest Levy proposed by the school board on September 22 that hopes to respond to financial worries families may have due to the covid-19 pandemic.

By: James Rose

 

On September 22, the Chagrin Falls Exempted Village School school board released a presentation on the current operating levy that will be voted on November 3. This operating levy will not increase taxes, as a result of strategic cuts.

Chagrin Falls schools, as part of house bill 920, must rely on voters to get a new flat amount of revenue for the school over the next decided period of time. 

“Sustain Chagrin” is the name given to this new levey by the school board, to reflect how this will keep the levy the same as it was earlier, and to express that this money is needed to keep this school district running well.

Mrs. Ashley Brudno, the treasurer for Chagrin Falls schools, made it clear that the most important thing voters should know about this levy is how taxes will stay flat if this levy passes.

This point has a clear importance in the creation of this levy, as covid 19 has caused troubles all over the world and the school board does not wish  to put more pressure on people in chagrin at this time.

Getting the bill this low was tricky for the school board, though.

“We were tracking for being on the ballot for about a 7.9 mill ask in november of this year,” said superintendent Dr. Robert Hunt  in a video entitled “Levy Conversation with Dr. Hunt and Mrs. Brudno.”

 

This shows a clear drop in the  actually proposed in the spring, which asked for 3.85 mills.

A large portion of this saving can come from how the debt payments for the middle school building can be accelerated. When Chagrin Falls voted to pay for this building, the school was given an amount of money that must have been spent on the costs of building the school.

If the debt for this school is paid off then any other money set aside for paying for the middle school building can now be spent on operating, leading to more income for the school before it must sacrifice services.

The school has also tried other methods to get the cost of this levy down.

Mrs. Brudno noted that the school has planned to and started implementing cost saving measures to save around $1.2 million.

These cuts show how the current money being asked is something that went through careful consideration before implementing.

Another thing to consider with “Sustain Chagrin” is how that money will affect the school’s balance.

 “[This levy] takes us out another three years, which is the intent and that’s our commitment to get us another three years to get out of this economic environment that we’re in and reassess at that point,” stated Mrs. Brudno.

This extra three years comment reveals that Chagrin will still be losing saved money for operating, this means this bill is based partially on the assumption that chagrin will be in a better economic position three years from now and can better balance this payment out.

Another thing to consider with this levy is what happens if it fails?

“We would probably have to make further expenditure cuts,” said Mrs. Brudno.

These possible cuts will continue until another levy can be proposed in the spring.  

Dr. Hunt further explained the impact failing this levy will have.

 “We don’t like to run scare campaigns but the reality of that answer is it’s going to be some combination of additional cuts. It really starts to impact programming and what we’re offering students and a return to the ballot for millage and any millage passed in the spring will be at an additional cost to the district,” Dr. Hunt said.