WINTERSVILLE - The Indian Creek Local School District is attempting to pass a 4.95-mill bond issue and operating levy on the March 6 ballot, and the school district's levy and bond committee met on Jan. 18 at Indian Creek High School to discuss issues concerning that levy.
Larry George, chairman of the levy and bond committee, said the weekly meetings are open to the public, and attendance has averaged around 60 people comprised of local administrators, teachers, parents and concerned citizens. The meetings will continue through February.
George said that in addition to each committee reporting on progress, the meetings also act as a public forum for comments and suggestions from the public.
"We also have a website as well as a Facebook page set up so the public can have information about the issue, and suggestions can be posted online, also. Our slogan is 'One community, one vision, our future,'" said George.
The committees cover a multitude of topics such as fundraising, literature publication, poll workers, voter registration and tour guides, among others.
"We have an event coming up that we're calling Mine Plus Nine. It's going to be an ice cream social and what will happen is that everyone will have a ticket, and they will sit with nine others to work on the levy and come up with ideas," said George.
The 4.95-mill levy - a 3.5-mill bond issue and a 1.45-mill five-year operating levy - would provide the school district with $22 million for a new high school building. The school district would be responsible for $15 million, according to officials, while the Ohio School Facilities Commission would provide $7 million.
The 1.45-mill operating levy would help the district maintain programs, staffing levels and daily operations, and will generate $473,000 annually, officials said. In addition, the millage would provide renovations to Wayne, Wintersville and Hills Elementary schools.
"Our high school was built in 1947, so the age of the building isn't the biggest factor here - it's that it isn't big enough and there aren't enough classrooms," said George.
Indian Creek administration also is conducting tours of the current facility so local taxpayers can be armed with all the correct information before they vote, according to officials. To schedule a tour, contact Steve Howser at Indian Creek High School at (740) 264-1163.
The new high school would be built on the same property as the current school, but George said they have been throwing ideas around that would see construction running closer and more parallel to the football stadium.
Project costs are $29 million for the new high school and renovations to the three elementary schools in the district as well as upgrading existing extracurricular facilities.
For residents under the age of 65, the levy, if passed, will cost the average home owner less than $10 per month, and those over 65 who qualify for the Homestead Exemption will pay less than $7 per month.
The committee meetings are held from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. every Wednesday, and the next meeting will be Wednesday at the high school.
For information, visit www.facebook.com/ICLevy2012.
(Kins can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.)