TIPP CITY — In November, the Tipp City school district is asking voters to approve a renewal levy again and make it a continuous levy.
“This is such an essential part of the longevity of our district,” Superintendent Gretta Kumpf said.
The 2 mill permanent improvement levy would generate about $668,946 the first year, which can only be used for capital improvement projects, curriculum and materials, school buses and technology equipment, Kumpf said. The dollars the levy generates are not used for operating expenses or on salaries.
The levy funds were an important piece of recent renovations at L.T. Ball Intermediate and Tippecanoe Middle School, Kumpf said. Those permanent improvement projects include new windows at the middle school and exterior doors at both buildings, security upgrades, new fire alarm systems, replacement of the chiller at L.T. Ball, new boilers and hot water heaters, roof repairs, the refinishing of the gym floor at the middle school and more.
“We’re excited about the renovations that have recently taken place and (permanent improvement) dollars are used for that. That’s very, very important to us,” she said.
If voters approve the ballot issue in November, the levy will be in place continuously, without coming back to the voters every five years.
Because the levy has never lapsed since it was first approved in 1968 (it failed once, but was approved by voters at the next election before the levy expired), Kumpf said the community “has told us that they do value this.”
“Since it has been on the books since ‘68, it seems like a natural next step for that just to be a maintained piece,” she said.
The district hopes that by making the levy continuous, it will reduce the amount of “levy fatigue” felt by voters.
“Whether it’s a three- or five-year interval, it becomes an element of voter fatigue,” Kumpf said. “Those years roll around rather quickly.”
She also noted that levy campaigns require a good deal of time and expense, which would no longer be needed if the levy is made continuous.
“We’re not asking for more, we’re just maintaining it at the 2 mills, we’re maintaining zero new taxes,” she said.
Reach Cecilia Fox at firstname.lastname@example.org.