River View placing income tax levy on November ballot

| July 19, 2019

WARSAW – River View Local School District is asking for voters help to replace revenue that will be lost with the closure of the Conesville AEP Power Plant in May 2020.

The River View Board of Education voted on Thursday evening, July 18 to place a new levy on the November ballot. It is an annual tax of three-quarters of one percent for current expenses for a period of five years on the River View Local School District income of individuals and estates.

In 2017 the power plant was devalued by the Ohio Department of Taxation from 72.2 million to 34.7 million. River View has already seen a decrease of more than one million dollars in local revenue and is predicted to see another 1.2 million upon full closure of the plant. If voters pass this new income tax levy in November it will generate around two million annually.

River View Superintendent Dalton Summers said when they speak to groups about the levy they plan to stress the fact that they are not asking for more money than needed.

“We aren’t asking for additional money,” he said. “We just want to replace what we will lose in revenue. This is money that we use to educate your kids. It’s not for new buildings. We are just asking for this money so we can keep what we have. If it doesn’t pass we won’t have what we already do. We want to be able to maintain the quality education we’ve been providing.”

The board chose the income tax approach over the traditional property tax for three main reasons.

  1. The last time voters approved a traditional property tax to financially support River View Local School District was in the early 1990s.
  2. The River View Local School District has attempted three operating levies and one bond issue since and they have all failed.
  3. The River View Board of Education recognizes the community’s inability to support a property tax increase and has chosen to take the route of an income tax instead.

Income that won’t be taxed includes: Social Security benefits, disability benefits, survivor benefits, railroad retirement benefits, welfare benefits, child support, property received as a gift, bequest or inheritance, and workers compensation benefits.

“Last year we had an overall grade from the state of a B,” Summers said. “Only 14 percent of all districts were at a B or higher. We are proud that we have been able to offer this education without asking for new tax levies every other year. Unfortunately, the closure of our local power plant is having a devastating effect on the entire community. The school system has taken a major hit in its revenue source. We believe the income tax levy may be a better, more acceptable approach based on our community’s specific situation. This levy is a necessity if we want to maintain the level of education we are offering now.”

Cost for voters example

If voters pass River View’s income tax levy in November it would cost someone with a taxable income of $50,000:

  • $375 annually
  • $31.25 monthly
  • Approximately $1 daily

Editor’s note: These figures were determined by multiplying 50,000 by .0075.


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Category: Education

About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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