Urbana school board approves renewal levy


By Casey S. Elliott - celliott@civitasmedia.com



Urbana City Schools voters will have one chance to approve a renewal levy before it falls off the books at the end of the year.

The school board approved placing the district’s 5.9-mill, five-year operating levy renewal on the November ballot. The levy would bring in an estimated $1.19 million next year. The decision was made at the board’s Tuesday meeting.

The board chose not to ask voters to approve a second renewal levy in November. It didn’t want to run the risk of having the must-pass renewal fail because two levies were on the ballot, Treasurer Mandy Hildebrand said.

That second renewal levy, a 14.88-mill one, may be put on a special election ballot in the spring next year. The school board and district administrators were considering changing it to a “continuous” levy, meaning voters would not vote on it again if approved.

The school board has been attempting to lengthen the time between levies to combat voter fatigue, and save money. Districts must pay a portion of election costs when they have issues on ballots. Voters previously approved a 3.5-mill permanent improvement levy as continuous.

In other action, the board:

•Approved hiring teachers Jennifer Chapman, Ashley Folkerth and Ashley Wood; and Guidance Counselor McKenzie Lamb.

•Accepted the fiscal year 2016 Agricultural Education 5th quarter grant and the stipend of $3,750 for each Ag Ed teacher, Mallory Zachrich and Steve Wilhelm.

•Approved Head Girls Tennis Coach Megan Michael at Step 0 for the 2015-16 school year.

•Approved Assistant High School Football Coach Evan Sawyer at Step 0 for the 2015-16 school year.

•Approved Junior High Football volunteer Richard Stevens at Level 1 for the 2015-16 school year.

•Approved the contract with ProCare Therapy for the provision of SLP Services for the 2015-16 school year.

By Casey S. Elliott

celliott@civitasmedia.com

Casey S. Elliott may be reached at 937-652-1331 ext. 1772 or on Twitter @UDCElliott.

Casey S. Elliott may be reached at 937-652-1331 ext. 1772 or on Twitter @UDCElliott.