Chardon Schools – Why I am voting NO on Issue 21

By: Kathy Johnson

The Chardon School bond issue, Issue 21 – “The Plan”, would be a 5.3-mill increase over 37 years! The ballot issue facing voters on November 5 represents only the first phase of the facilities plan. Should voters approve the current bond issue to replace the middle and high schools with a building complex for grades 6-12, yet another bond issue will be forthcoming to replace the elementary schools with new building. The total cost of both phases of The Plan will eventually be 8-mills. Not only that, but according to the district’s budget projections, taxpayers will likely see yet another operating levy on the ballot in 3 to 4 years!

Our property taxes are already among the highest in the state when compared to income. Currently, 64.66% of my already substantial real estate tax in Chardon Township goes to the Chardon Schools; this significant tax increase would be an unwelcome burden. The Plan is an outrageous ask being presented to the residents of the Chardon School District! We can’t afford it!

The community is hearing a lot of dialogues. There is talk about substandard facilities, but many of these claims are due to maintenance issues that have long been neglected – this is self-inflicted disrepair. There is talk of overcrowding, but that problem is due to the district reconfiguring grade levels in an illogical and very unpopular manner and to the closing of facilities including Maple Elementary – this is self-inflicted overcrowding!

There are unnecessary dream provisions in The Plan – we don’t need a new sports area, a new 700 seat auditorium, a new transportation complex, or a new board of education building.

The arguments we are hearing about renovation versus replacement costs are inflated. One example is that residents are told that the leaking roof at the high school can’t be replaced correctly due to the extra cost of asbestos removal, but that same asbestos cleanup cost would also be incurred if the building were torn down! Another example is that low-energy LED lighting upgrades to existing buildings have already been paid for by the taxpayers; this sizeable investment would no longer be needed or utilized under The Plan. There are many examples.

One of the saddest things about The Plan is that it is never-ending in terms of the lives of the residents who will bear the burden of paying for it; many of us won’t live to see this plan fully paid for. And think about this – students who are in high school now would be paying for these bond issues over nearly their entire working careers!

Buying into The Plan would force people out of our community!

I am voting a guiltless NO on Issue 21!

35 thoughts on “Chardon Schools – Why I am voting NO on Issue 21

  1. I agree, you expressed precisely how my family and neighbors feel about Issue 21!

  2. My neighbor has an Issue 21 sign, but told me that he only put it up because of pressure and intimidation. He is afraid for his son who attends Chardon.

    He is voting against Issue 21.

  3. This site has been a godsend for the conspiracy theorists. Alex Jones would be proud of you all. No one is forcing people to put a sign in front of their house. If they are that fragile that they are in fear of not doing it, I feel sorry for them. Snowflake would be your term for them, right? The district has never claimed the schools are overcrowded. That has been spread by Joe Loyd and his whack job GOAT followers. The enrollment of the high school is below the historical high even with five grades. The rooms were designed for 1950s teaching methods. They aren’t configured for 21st century methods. The class sizes are appropriate and are projected to be so in the future.
    What would be acceptable to the no crowd for fixing the facilities? Would a $50M renovation bond be ok? $25M? How about if we boil the frog and put a $3M bond on the ballot every three years for the next 25 years? You people really have a hard-on for the schools. Why isn’t there as much vitriol for the Metz or fire department or park district or roads department or library a couple years ago? Hanlon and the school board are an easy target for you. Why not go after the fire chief? They must be wasting money too, always asking for more. Do they really need that many expensive trucks? How often do they really use them? And those salaries of firefighters for sitting around most of the day. How about the roads? They seem all right, why give them more money? It only snows for part of the year. Patches seem to hold up. Just patch again in the spring when everything thaws. That’s a lot less expensive than replacing. And all that money for Metz? For what, like a few dozen people? That doesn’t seem worth your hard earned tax dollars. Maybe they should budget better like everyone else has to.
    You’re all hypocrites.

  4. The only hypocrite is you and you have your facts confused. There were all kinds of complaints made she. The school closed buildings and crammed kids together. There have been numerous attempts to finance new buildings over the last 35 years. All have been voted down. There has never been an attempt at a levy for repairs. Our taxes are too high as it is, without adding more. I’m voting no. They need to come up with a plan. To repair the buildings they have delibertly neglected

  5. I smell something fishy….
    The stench of Rotten Kahuna. How is Buzz a hypocrite? For calling you people out using your own arguments? Sounds like you got a case of “I know you are but what am I?” I’m sure elsewhere you’ve uttered the words “What about Clinton?” You must be 10 years old. There are no confused facts here. For a makeshift organization against taxes, the GOATS have not bitched about anything other than the school district. When Loyd tried to rail against a Hambden fire levy, his buddy Ed shut him down. That’s hypocritical.

  6. We can’t afford the tax increase plain and simple! In our neighborhood we are going to have to put in a seer treatment plant st 30,000 per household 114 houses between the school and that it’s approximately 40.00 per month because they don’t know the real cost of the sewers. Then we are looking at 44-68.00 every other month for a sewer bill. You tell me how my 900.00 a month ss check covers that

  7. Chardon needs to change the way its schools are funded. Income tax rather than property tax makes more sense. That way, free loading renters pay their share and those collecting a mere 900 per month in SS would be completely spared.
    Get with the times Chardon and find our schools constitutionally.

  8. Issue 21 is nothing more than a lining of the pockets of the school board members and their families and friends. This is a big money grab.

  9. Chardon has zero to do with school funding. The state legislature controls that. Rep Patterson has crafted a bill that addresses that. They’re still haggling over the details. Contact your state representatives and urge them to support that. HB 305, Cupp-Patterson School Funding Formula.

  10. And how does that happen? I’m intrigued by your level of stupidity that implies that school board members will get wealthy off of passage of Issue 21. Let’s hear it.

  11. You too are a hypocrite! And a confused on Ryder.

    Stop faking your cancer and pretending to be cured you serpent! And stop darting your tongue in an out, it’s disgusting.

  12. I’m intrigued by your level of sensitivity, and name calling!

    Chardon is a school with bullies, and it starts with parents like you…..

  13. Income taxes by State are LEGAL way to fund our schools. property taxes Way is ILLEGAL. don’t vote for state legislators who want to continue to fund schools illegally because they are too lazy to change it.

  14. But accusing good people of fraud and theft with no evidence or basis is perfectly acceptable to you? Another hypocrite.

  15. TO BUZZ….
    I’m with Big Kahuna. I also feel you are a hypocrite, ill informed, and maybe even ignorant. Can’t see the forest for the trees. Or maybe your’e a millionaire and don’t care about all the taxes. Yes, no one is forcing signs in peoples yards but in many cases that I know of, the over zealous pro 21ers are intimidating, making people feel guilty about not supporting the kids which is bullshit, this is not about the kids but that’s the line they use every time. Yes there are people (snowflakes) with no backbone who can’t stand up, but that’s beside the point. This is still what’s happening in many cases. Also, no one is singling out the schools only. Most of the people against this are against ALL the levies but this one is huge, unreasonable, and at the forefront. Try to find some common sense about this, IF YOU CAN, and come back into reality. Your comment is all over the map and ignorant. Obviously you have no knowledge of the “Blue Ribbon” schools around the country that are 70 years and older, still in high demand.

    TO RYDER….
    I think you are smelling yourself Ryder. Go take a shower. As far as I can see, no one is using their own arguments against themselves. You and Buzzy Boy have FAILED to make a good argument for that. I think the real problem is that both of you have very bad information stuck in your heads that you choose to believe and can’t get over it. If you read through the posts and comments on this site, you will find some excellent information from people. I fear you both are blinded to common sense and truth even when it hits you in the face, therefore it is a waste communicating with you.

    TO DAKOTA:
    I’m MORE INTRIGUED by YOUR level of STUPIDITY. I have not seen anyone say the school board members are getting rich from this. It is common knowledge….most levies passed are done so through lies, misinformation, with resulting pay raises for department heads and employees. If you don’t know this, you are not paying attention and are ill informed. Please don’t stay stupid.

    In conclusion, what I have noticed in all the comments and statements I’ve read on this site and elsewhere from the pro 21ers are the same empty montras, lies, and misinformation. It seems to me that these people think with there emotions rather than common sense and are easily mislead. Why don’t you pro 21ers stop perverting and distorting truth, facts, and common sense?

  16. Another long winded reply by the Sleepy Kitty that said nothing. You really must be an angry person. Are you like this in non-election years? Can’t we all just get along?

    Accusation of school Board members getting rich from this:
    Chardon Resident says:
    October 27, 2019 at 7:20 pm
    Issue 21 is nothing more than a lining of the pockets of the school board members and their families and friends. This is a big money grab.

    I think Ryder and Buzz do make a good point. I looked over the GOATS posts and most are only about the schools. I know it’s the big issue right now but it looks like they’re afraid to take on the fire and roads departments or mental health. Maybe something with one of those hits close to home? Regardless, probably wouldn’t be good PR for them. They get more support bashing the schools.

  17. Chardon keeps putting Levys on the ballot because they need the money to pay the retirement settlements that they promised these people. Some of these people even custodians and cafeteria workers work for 10 years at a job &retire. And then go to another job so they’re working and getting paid plus excepting a retirement. This has to stop. They should ask for volunteers, like a lot of schools do .come in and volunteer for a few hours, You get to see what your kids are up to and being taught. No need for paid assistance get volunteers. Save some tax money!

  18. do we really need a 700 seat sports arena ! is total bull s….t ! my taxes will increase $ 400.00 they just
    went up $ 200.00 for the last sneeky school crap . i am 72 retired and a 70yr munson resedent , my parents
    before me, am on a FIXED income…….. i have a plan . #1 sell the secret land and fix the roof . # 2 fire
    some over head, and some teachers, and then HIRE some maintance personal . pay them like teachers.
    #3 add on to the high school over the foot ball field . # 4 rent a corn field for track and field activities or
    cancel all. have school just for school , parents and students that are unhappy move to a different school.
    this would reduce the burden on tax payers down the road. #5 make your own sign no on 21!
    a ticked off tax payer

  19. The county auditor’s website features a link that actually shows you what each levy will cost you as a property owner on a yearly basis. Be sure to look yours up using the steps below, but in the mean time, I chose a $200k property in the city of Chardon as an example.
    Items in the CURRENT $4,181.00 yearly property tax breakdown are:
    School 64.23% $2685.29
    Metz 6.09% $254.61
    Library 3.71% $155.11
    Park Dist 2.39% $99.92
    Childrens Srvcs 1.83% $76.51
    Mental Health 1.72% $71.91
    Senior Citizens 1.43% $59.78
    Road/Bridge 1.42% $59.37
    The passing of issue 12 will increase taxes by $474/yr resulting in the 64% going toward schools incresing to 69% of the total property tax bill.
    Again, I would STRONGLY ENCOURAGE you to visit the County Auditor’s page and look at what the school, and other levies will cost you and make the decision for yourself. It’s very easy.
    1. go to http://www.geaugarealink.co.geauga.oh.us/realink/
    2. Type in your address (Leave out the St, Rd, Ln circle, etc)
    3. Click on the link when a match is displayed
    4. Click on the “tax details” tab at the top.
    5. Scroll to the bottom and click on “See how issues on latest ballot could/will affect your taxes.

  20. Correction to the above post. I transposed the numbers. The reference was to Issue 21, not Issue 12.

  21. Thank you for posting the auditors website link. It helps to see the $$$ in b & w!
    TOO MANY $$$ ! NO ! NO ! NO !

  22. I completely agree. The entire proposal is deceiving, why else would they be hiding behind Issue 21 and not mentioning on the signage that once again Chardon Schools are asking for money! The attitude is just to throw away old buildings rather than trying to salvage and repurpose. Of course their next ask will be for more money for the teachers…that comes after the new/expanded stadium?? Seriously where are their priorities?

  23. No one at Chardon made promises to pay retirement settlements. The school district’s portion of the retirement for its employees is required by law – and is the same at every school district in Ohio. It’s not some big fringe that Chardon chose to give its employees.
    The pay for school district positions is low compared to similar positions in private industries. The school has difficulty filling those positions as it is. Your suggestion is to use volunteers? I don’t think they would turn away someone who volunteers to help, but there isn’t a line out the door for paid help, I doubt there would be unpaid help.
    Every school has to keep putting levies on the ballot because the amount they collect does NOT go up with inflation and property value increases. As property values increase, the millage they collect is REDUCED. Take a look at your tax bill. You’ll see a line on there that says HB 920 credit. It’s a negative number. It REDUCES your taxes. That is money that the schools lose due to HB 920. Thus, they have to continually go back on the ballot and request additional millage. It’s the fault of the funding system. Not the fault of the schools. If you would like to see changes in the funding and fewer levies, contact your legislators. Support HB305.

  24. Hysterical!! You are telling me that a school board member who make $145 a meeting is lining their pockets. WoW!! You need to go to the Ohio School Board Association and tell them that.

  25. “Lining of the pockets of the school board members and their families and friends?” Is that what you actually think? Do you actually think they get the money? Or, are you just trying to incite anger? If you’re just trying to incite anger, shame on you. If you actually believe that, let me provide you with some accurate information. The school board does NOT get money from levies or bonds. Tax money goes to the school, not the members of the Board. This is not medievil England. They don’t “tax the people while they sit at banquet.” Board members are compensated $125 per Board meeting. They receive no compensation for any other time they spend in service to the school. The many other hours they devote to the District are hours they volunteer in service to our schools. They are also allowed reimbursement for any travel expenses, or mileage, though I believe most of Chardon Board members do not ever actually submit for such reimbursement. (Nor, does the Superintendent submit for the travel reimbursements that are due to him.) This information is all public. Available from the district treasurer if you take the time to ask for it. All of the district’s financial information is public and is audited, as required by law, each and every year.

  26. And it will lose again but will cost the school system at least $10,000 for a special election.

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