Taxpayers for Westerville Schools

Putting children and their education first and uniting the community…

Issue 59 – Raising taxes on Homeowners

Issue 59 is a tax increase on the home owners in Westerville. Whether your home is worth $100,000 or $300,000 or more, your taxes will go up if Issue 59 passes.

Tax increase on home valued at $310,000

The Westerville School District will collect $83,000,000 with the 5-Year emergency levy and have $90,000,000 in the bank at the end of that time period. Why do they need to collect more in taxes from struggling families?

On November 8th, just vote “NO” on Issue 59. Let’s bring back some common sense into our district.

Vote “NO” on New Tax Levy

Taxpayers for Westerville Schools is encouraging a “No” vote on the upcoming tax levy. Click here to request your yard sign…

Parents, residents and taxpayers have been urging the district for fiscal responsibility with quality results for years. We should not continue to reward the school district’s poor performance and behavior. The 5 year emergency levy was passed to provide the district the supposed necessary funds to provide our children a quality education. However, the district has not used any of the money nor have they provided the positive results expected for this investment.

“The district spent none of the monies collected and now they want to continue collecting this tax. It’s reprehensible!” stated Jim Burgess, a Taxpayers for Westerville Schools leader, resident and taxpayer.

 

The 5 year emergency levy was passed to collect in total about $83,000,000. At the end of the levy’s five years, the school district will have nearly $90,000,000 in the bank. The district was even able to give about 400 employees over 30% in pay raises over 4 years without spending any of the monies raised from this levy. Westerville residents gave the school district their money expecting responsible spending yet not one dime of it was even spent.

“With 35% of our kids living in poverty, how much more beneficial would these funds have been in the hands of the hurting families it was taken from?” asked Mr. Burgess.

 

The new levy is a tax increase, plain and simple. The levy, if it should pass, will allow the district to permanently collect much more than the $16,540,000 per year it is allowed to collect today. This tax levy takes the voted tax rate from 6.71 mils to 7.13 mils. The ballot clearly states “the sum of such tax to increase” meaning the district will see a tax increase.

“I find it insulting to the intelligence of Westerville taxpayers that the district’s treasurer tells us that it is not ‘a new tax’ yet in his next breath tells us it raises more money for the district,” stated Dave Fitzpatrick a local businessman, taxpayer, and father. Mr. Fitzpatrick continued, “This levy, by the very admission of the treasurer, takes more money out of the community. That’s called a tax increase.”

 

In addition to the poor fiscal management we are seeing, we need to consider the results of the school district; especially in light of all the additional funds available.

The district gutted 35% of the Magnet program. The Magnet program is one of the best programs available for our elementary children yet it was cut rather than fully restored and expanded. About 35% of our college bound students have to take remedial math and or English courses. Full day Kindergarten costs families about $3,500 for this education add-on yet it’s not even available to all children. It took 3 years to finally restore busing.

“I am very concerned about the education and services our students are receiving. I just don’t see the educational improvements expected and I feel that student services are being restored at a snail’s pace, especially for the money we are spending,” commented retired teacher and taxpayer, Meta Hahn. “I also don’t see our middle schoolers offered the number of educational options of surrounding districts. We still haven’t even restored their career–technology class.”

 

The most recent State Report Card didn’t show any improvements in Westerville’s educational offering. The district is lacking in improved results. The new report card is a more honest measurement of a district’s results and shows Westerville with an overall grade of “C”. Taxpayers and parents have been calling for the district to improve yet their voices have fallen on deaf ears.

The taxpayers of Westerville do not need to approve this levy. Westerville schools has banked nearly $90,000,000 in five years which shows they can last another 5 years or more without the passage of this levy. We don’t need to continue to be one of the highest taxed districts in the area.

Yard Sign
If you would like to support this effort, vote “No” yard signs are available by going to the Taxpayers for Westerville Schools website – Click here to request your yard sign.

Vote “No” on the tax levy. The District has enough excess that we can let our families finally keep more of their hard earned money.

Originally published Oct. 15, 2016

Issue 59 – Raising taxes on our businesses

What do we know?

We know that the current 5 year emergency levy will raise $83,000,000 over its 5 year life. We also know that at the end of those same 5 years the school shows they will have $90,000,000 in the bank. And they don’t want us to know that they didn’t spend a dime of the money from the last levy.

Now they want you to believe this isn’t a tax increase. We have shown over and over again this levy will raise your taxes and the taxes on our businesses.

Iron Pony Tax Increase

Issue 59 – Vote No. It wasn’t needed 5 years ago and it most certainly is not needed now?

Issue 59 – Paying More For Your Dairy Queen Blizzard

The Westerville School District will collect $83,000,000 from the 5 year emergency levy and have $90,000,000 in the bank 1 year later. Yet, they want you to vote for a tax increase after they didn’t spend a dime?

Click Here to see what the tax increase does to a homeowner. If it raises taxes on the homeowner, just think what it does to businesses.

How many Blizzards will Dairy Queen have to sell to pay for their tax increase?

Tax Increase on Dairy Queen

Well, we don’t know how many but we do know it will be you paying the bill!

Issue 59 – It is a Double Tax…

So Issue 59 passes (even though the school district didn’t spend a dime of the revenue raised from the last levy) and your taxes go up! So, you say that’s not a problem. That is your choice.

What you forget is that everybody’s taxes go up. So when you go to McDonald’s, or Giant Eagle, or Donatos, or Westerville Golf, their taxes went up too and someone has to pay for that. Guess what? That someone is you.

Taxes go up when Issue 59 passes...

Whether it is a fast food restaurant, a grocery store, or even Westerville Golf, their prices will rise so they can pay for their tax increase. That means that you not only pay for your tax increase but their tax increase, too!

That is a double tax!

Issue 59 – Raising your taxes…

Taxpayers for Westerville Schools is taking the time to dig into the real truth about this tax levy. It may be “Zero New Tax” in 2017 but it increases your taxes in 2018 and beyond.

Raising taxes on homes worth $160K

This example shows a home valued at $160,000 and the amount the tax increase will be on that property.

Vote No on 59. Yes it raises your taxes and no they don’t need the money (afterall, they will still have $92,000,000 in the bank 1 year after the emergency levy stops collecting).

Issue 59 – The Hidden Tax!

What we taxpayers fail to remember is that a property tax is also a hidden tax that we pay twice!

That’s right. If Issue 59 passes, you will pay about $620 a year in additional taxes, starting in 2018 – assuming your home is valued at about $310,000.

But it doesn’t stop there. Businesses also have to pay this new tax.

For the McDonald’s on State St., that’s about $2,500 per yer. So let’s look at some of Westerville’s businesses per year tax increases:

$2,500 – McDonalds
$1,500 – Pizza Hut
$1,250 – Dairy Queen
$5,200 – Iron Pony
$3,300 – Westerville Golf
$40,000 – JP Morgan
$4,990 – Harris House (“Affordable” housing for senior citizens)
$8,110 – Capital City Millwork
$1,272 – KFC
$1,100 – NAPA Auto Parts
$6,092 – CVS Pharmacy
$1,135 – Jimmy V’s
$1,600 – Tim Horton’s
$1,734 – Arby’s
$3,220 – Taco Bell

McDonald's Tax Increase

How many Happy Meals or tacos or golf games or motorcycle helmets or bottles of aspirin or Iced Coffees must be bought to make up for all of the extra cost these business have to incur? They can’t absorb these costs so they must pass them along to you, the consumer, the taxpayer. By voting for Issue 59, you will also be forced to, in addition to your property taxes, pay this “Hidden Cost” of the tax levy.

And seriously, when the school district didn’t spend a dime of the emergency levy and will soon have $92,000,000 in the bank, they have proven that don’t need this extra money, anyway. They are doing just fine without it!

Issue 59 Raises taxes on the low-income elderly

Taxpayers for Westerville Schools is sharing the below chart to show how Issue 59 will affect low-income senior citizens if Issue 59 passes.

The Harris-Askins House “was built to meet the local need for housing for low-income senior citizens. (Harris-Adkins House website)” If Issue 59 passes, low-income senior citizens will have to pay an additional $19,900 in taxes over the next 5 years (based on an analysis of current taxes and the estimated cost of Issue 59).

Harris-Askins House tax Increase

Every year after 2021, Issue 59 will cost this business almost $5,000 per year affecting the affordability of their housing for low-income seniors.

The Westerville City School District will collect $83,000,000 from the 5 year emergency levy yet have $90,000,000 in the bank. With the school district flush with cash, isn’t it time to help our seniors and lower their cost of living?