Letters to the Editor
Who will pay for new WHCS – and at what cost?
A while back, I attended the 50th anniversary of the class of 1964 in my northeastern Ohio high school. That old school and the then-brand new elementary I attended have both been plowed under and replaced because they outlived 50 years, the standard life expectancy for school construction.
As a grateful former principal and retiree of the Woodford County Public School system, I have been both surprised and more than a little disappointed that petitioners chose to show a lack of faith in the wisdom of their Board of Education for replacing a building that, frankly speaking, showed signs of failing health long before I retired a dozen years ago.
I am also amazed at the amount of misinformation about the cost of the proposed levy. Some folks misunderstand just what a 5.5 “mil” will cost them, thinking it’s $550 per $100,000 of valuation. That’s an exaggeration of 10 times.
Allow me to use this example to illustrate. The property tax increase for a Versailles townhome that I sold in 2016 for less than $100,000 would have cost us less than .00055 x $100,000 - or a total annual increase of $55.
Who will pay for the new WCHS? What will be the cost? In my opinion, the answer to both questions will be the same if this levy does not pass. The students will pay, and the cost may well be their future.
Dr. John H. Buckner
Former Southside Elementary School principal
Let’s hear from students on school tax
Editor, The Sun:
Thank you Woodford Sun for the coverage of the most important decision this community has faced in a long time, the High School. I believe our schools board has acted responsibly, diligently and honorably. There have been many eloquent, persuasive letters, but what is sorely missing is the voice of the population that will live with the decision -- the students. Woodford Sun, please cover this population! To add further insult only a small percentage of students are able to vote. Some would say “they won’t be paying the tax,” but many of our students have jobs and certainly will in the future; paying into a Social Security that may or may not be funded enough to provide them with a marginal benefit. My point, we all pay for things in our community that we do not see direct benefit; I pay taxes for roads I never travel but I care about people in this community, so I am happy to pay for safe roads. I believe it is my duty to be committed to the whole community, not just the parts I see direct benefit.
My daughter, a sophomore, will never spend one day in the new school. However, when she looks for a community to raise her family, where will she choose? I hope it’s Versailles. Not just because we lay bricks and mortar, but because she witnessed a community come together and invest in the future.
Ask the future scientist, veterinarian, health care professional how a state of the art science lab could give a competitive advantage for college or the ag student how a shared green space with the middle school could benefit the study of the increasing challenge of feeding this county, state and even the world. Creating a collaborative learning environment would align to the collaborative working environment top companies proved highly effective over a decade ago. Having an advanced security system would make them feel safer!
I want every student to have the advantage to be what they most desire to be. I can give up the equivalent of a trip to Starbucks once a month. It will be a good day if I can say to my daughter, “Sorry sweetheart, no treat today, I want my grandchild to have that science lab you would have loved!” Please vote and before you do, ask a student, “How would you vote?”
Praise for firefighters, utility workers
Editor, The Sun:
During a terrible storm … an electric line was broken and some of it landed it in my yard and some in my neighbor’s yard – there was smoke coming from her garage.
I could not believe how quickly the fire department was there, and after they left, the electric company was here. Those guys were working in the rain with that electricity and had to cut limbs off trees.
Within less than two hours, our electric was restored. We are so blessed to have such people seeing to our needs!