After failing three times in three years, Mogadore schools again will ask Summit and Portage county voters to approve a 5.9-mill additional levy.
It’s the only issue on the ballots in either county for the special election Aug. 5.
The levy would raise roughly $500,000 annually, which, coupled with lesser cuts and two more years of across-the-board pay freezes, should keep the suburban school district solvent, administrators said.
Facing a $500,000 annual spending deficit, Superintendent Christina Dinklocker said the district plans to increase pay-to-play fees and cut busing should the levy fail. The board appeased residents by reversing a prior decision to close athletic fields over the summer.
An August vote gives parents one last chance to avoid driving children to school in the fall, Dinklocker said.
Typically lower voter turnout in August could be favorable for Dinklocker, who hopes that yes votes continue to trend upward.
But being the only entity to field an issue in two counties also could be costly.
In May, when 55.5 percent of voters rejected the levy, Mogadore schools paid the Portage County Board of Elections $440, splitting wages for workers at two polling locations — covering portions of Mogadore and Suffield Township — among primary candidates on a busy ballot.
This time around, however, “There’s no one else to share that cost, so they have to bear the full brunt,” said Brad Cromes, deputy director of the Portage County Board of Elections.
Cromes said the cost in Portage County should be closer to $5,375, which the city of Tallmadge paid in September for hosting the sole ballot issue in nearly the same number of Portage County precincts.
Summit elections officials were unavailable to comment on the cost for the special election.
Doug Livingston can be reached at 330-996-3792 or firstname.lastname@example.org.