New schools? Troy no, Career Center yes, Waynesville recount likely

The Miami Valley Career Technology Center’s bond issue/tax levy appears to have passed by a narrow margin, according to unofficial results from five local counties’ boards of election.

Final, unofficial results from Montgomery, Darke, Preble, Miami and Warren counties showed 50.8 percent of voters were in favor of the levy, and 49.2 percent had voted against it.

MVCTC was pushing for a $158 million renovation and expansion that would improve safety, capacity and technology at the Clayton campus that educates more than 1,500 high school students as well as adults.

Voters in the five counties rejected the same issue by a 52-48 percent vote in May.

TONIGHT: Get live election results here

RELATED: Voters rejected MVCTC issue in May

Other bond levies

** Wayne Local: Waynesville’s bond issue — aimed at replacing an old elementary school and constructing a new community center — is likely headed for a recount.

According to unofficial, final results, the levy passed by one vote out of 2,451 in Warren County and one vote out of 21 in Greene County, for totals of 1,237 for and 1,235 against. County boards of election still have to tabulate any provisional ballots that are ruled valid, and then would do a recount if the margin is still less than half of one percent.

It currently stands at 50.04 percent in favor and 49.96 percent opposed.

The 4.68-mill bond issue would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $163.80 annually, and the state would contribute $4.5 million to the school portion of the project, which also includes parking and transportation upgrades.

** Troy: Voters clearly rejected a 30-year bond issue to replace seven existing schools with two new elementaries. With 100 percent of precincts reporting unofficial results, “no” votes were at 60 percent.

The plan was to buy 58 acres off Ohio 55 and Nashville Road, just west of the city limits, to build one school for preschool through second grade and the other for third through sixth grades.

** Preble Shawnee: Shawnee voters rejected a combination property tax levy/income tax increase to pay for a new elementary in Camden and a new middle/high school between Gratis and West Elkton.

Preble and Montgomery County results showed 52.9 percent of ballots voting no, with 100 percent of precincts reporting unofficial results. Residents had already rejected the proposal twice in the past year.

MVCTC ballot details

Superintendent Nick Weldy said safety is a top issue, as MVCTC would be able to put more of its campus under a single roof with controlled entrances, rather than having students shuttle between multiple buildings with less secure doors.

On technology, Weldy said MVCTC still trains high school and adult students on some precision machining and welding equipment that is nearly 50 years old, with employers urging them to upgrade. The bond/tax would allow them to do so.

On capacity, Weldy said MVCTC had to turn away more than 300 high school students this fall, and the bond issue would allow the school to train more students in high-demand fields to help the region’s economy.

RELATED: 14 school levies on local ballots Tuesday

“Sinclair doesn’t offer a heavy equipment program or an electrician program, among others. In some (fields), we’re the only link in 12-13 counties,” Weldy said. “It’s pretty vital both on the high school and the adult side to keep this moving forward. With demand (for graduates) going up, our economic vitality in the region is only going to be limited by how many employees we can produce.”

The draw for bond issues is simple. If local voters agree to pay for part of the project via property taxes, the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission (OFCC) will chip in millions of dollars. But these are different from the standard five-year school levy. Like a 30-year mortgage on your house, most bond issues require a decades-long tax commitment from residents.

RELATED: MVCTC students win coding challenge

MVCTC’s combined property tax/bond issue would generate about $130 million. It would be 1.43 mills for the first 10 years, then drop to 1.09 mills for the final 20 years. The cost for a $100,000 home would start at $50 per year, then drop to $38. If voters approve the levy, the state will contribute $28.3 million to the project.

Residents in 27 school districts in five counties voted on the issue. School districts with their own, in-house career tech centers, such as Kettering and Dayton, do not vote on the bond issue.

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