Ross Local Schools Reintroduces Tax Levy for May Voting


Ainsley Helling

A yard sign in support of the levy available for Ross community members.

The Ross Local School District has reintroduced a tax levy concerning funding for a variety of school-related services that is to be voted upon this May.

The initial introduction of the levy failed last fall with a 53 to 47 percent margin, according to the Butler County Board of Election from Journal-News. Indicated by the close percentages, community voters are torn on the decision.

“The levy was reintroduced because the need for additional funding still exists. Without additional revenue, the district will run out of money in approximately 3 years,” said Ross High School Principal Brian Martin.

In order to raise awareness of the re-introduced levy, information is being distributed through the Ross website, direct mailing, and the district’s staff has spoken at several meetings involving boosters and parents. These efforts will persist until the election occurs in May.

This levy in particular is an earned income tax levy and therefore will have no effect on retirement pensions, interest, dividends, capital gains, or income from estates.  

“An earned income tax applies to wages and income from current employment,” according to the Ross Local School District Financial Summary, which was indicated in a flyer mailed to residents of the Ross community.

Tracy Eads, former Special Education Aid for Ross High School, parent, and community member, said “As technology advances, Ross Local Schools needs to keep pace in this changing society.”

Both Eads and her husband will be voting in May in support of the issue.

If the levy were to pass, the funds would be used to provide and maintain necessary educational services to students and staff members within the Ross Local School District.

According to Martin, the following expenses would be covered by the funds collected from the levy:

  • Instructional materials and software expenses
  • Staffing costs (such as safety and health services), equipment, travel, and supervision expenses
  • The replacement/repair of older buses and vehicles
  • Safe and efficient transportation to and from school and extracurricular activitiesSpecial education and gifted services
  • The support of intervention and enrichment services

If the levy were to not pass, the following changes would occur:

  • Reduce busing to state minimum requirements (eliminate busing for all Ross High School students and Ross Middle School, Elda Elementary, and Morgan Elementary students living less than 2 road miles from their school buildings would no longer receive busing; would impact parochial school students attending Badin, Queen of Peace, etc.)
  • Increase in extracurricular activities and athletic participation fees (increase could be by several hundred dollars. Ex. $150.00 per sport for students could turn to $600.00 per sport for students; includes band and choir)
  • Increase in school fees per students (art, chemistry, etc., could increase by up to 100%
  • Reduction of up to $800,000 in educational opportunities through staff and personnel
  • Reductions in curricular and extracurricular programs
  • Increase in class sizes
  • Reduction of support services

Consider the effects of the success or failure of the levy and visit your local polling location on May 7 to make your vote count.