CANTON TWP. -- At the regular meeting of the Canton Local Board of Education, adopted a resolution that is one of the last steps of putting a bond issue on the May 2013 election ballot.
If approved this would help with the construction of new schools and the renovation of some of the existing buildings.
Treasurer Jason Schatzel explained the millage of the bond issue will be slightly more in the upcoming election, due to valuations of properties going down. However, due to that change, property owners will be assessed accordingly.
Superintendent Kim Redmond said the, "The time is now and the need is real. "
Redmond said, due to the condition of some of the old buildings, difficult decisions are going to have to be made, if the funds are not there for new construction. Maintaining the existing buildings will be extremely costly.
If the bond issue is placed on the ballot, it will be the third time it has gone before the voters. In the last election, the levy went down by a vote of 2,509 to 2,342.
Greg Elliott, who graduated from Canton South High School in the 1990s, was there to offer suggestions about funding in the district. He asked if the board and administration had thought of following the actions of colleges and universities that seek financial help from local businesses. Elliott, who said his dad graduated from South in the 1960s and his grandfather in the 1940s, added that he "truly believes we need new schools."
Elliott said he wanted to be sure the district was drawing on the businesses in the area. Redmond agreed and said the school is already partnering with the community in several areas such as they are with Aultman Hospital, Time-Warner and others. She said the district, so far, has not been able to partner in the magnitude that Elliott was referring to, but she is always open to seek advice and help from those in the community.
Relating to election items, Canton Township Trustee Bill Smith attended the meeting to talk about using school facilities to either have a joint public informational meeting about the needs of the township and the district or having the township use the school for its own meeting. Smith, who talked about the last fire levy going down in defeat, said there is also a real need to go back to the voters in May.
He said the township is closing the North Industry Fire Station on Jan. 1, 2013, due to the condition of the building and not having the land for additional construction. Smith said all of these matters need to be brought to the public, so voters can see the needs of both entities.
The board said they would look at the matter and make a decision as to hold a joint meeting or not. Smith said the meeting is being considered for sometime after the first of the year.
In other business, the board of education:
ADOPTED a resolution determining to proceed with the issuance of bonds;
APPROVED the resignation/retirement of long-time teacher and tennis coach Art Fach, teacher at Faircrest Memorial Middle School, effective April 1, 2013:
APPROVED the employment of Jeff Schleappi, substitute bus driver; Adam Hurless, Josh Harris and Tyler Thouvenin, volunteer assistant wrestling coaches; all are effective for this school year;
ADOPTED board policies for employment of administrators and evaluation of teachers on limited contracts;
APPROVED the proposed 2013-14 school calendar;
ACCEPTED donations including $409 from Quest for Wildcats Helping Wildcats;
SET the date for the January 2013 organizational board of education meeting for 7:30 p.m., on Jan. 14, 2013, with the regular meeting following;
APPROVED an overnight student trip for Skip Laughlin, wrestling coach at Canton South, and 16 wrestlers to be in the Coshocton Tournament in January;
APPROVED the use of the school facilities for John Black of Grand Valley State University for the use of tennis courts on March 28-29 to play two college women's tennis matches; the first will be Wayne State vs. Indiana of PA University and the second will be Wayne state vs. West Liberty.