School tax levy fails at polls

by Laura Bednar

The $4.2 million levy renewal and $3 million increase for the Independence Local Schools failed at the polls on May 2. Out of the 1,921 people who voted, 806 (41.96%) voted for the levy and 1,115 (58.04%) voted against, according to unofficial election results from the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections.

The total cost for taxpayers would have been $452 a year per $100,000 of valuation, which equates to 13.96 mills for each $1 of taxable value. The levy would have been used to continue district operations, hire a school resource officer for each building and implement tuition-free preschool for 4-year-olds, according to Superintendent Ben Hegedish.

“Thank you to everyone who was part of our democratic process at the polls,” said Hegedish. “We will take this message from the community and continue to work on providing a great foundation for our students, while we listen and dig deeper on the details of a funding mechanism that the community will support.

“Please stay tuned for board of education listening sessions and opportunities to provide feedback so we can present a plan our community can rally behind.” ∞