When property taxes were lowered, a great deal of what disappeared from what we pay was that money that paid “automatically” for school construction and repairs. Now the only way these projects can be funded is through a referendum.
We have a handful of properties within the Elkhart School Corporation. We watch closely as government finds ways to spend our tax dollars. One of the segments of taxation we check is necessity, and we believe the referenda for our schools are needed. Why?
There are two reasons. Security and safety issues are at the core of what we are being asked to fund. Also, we have seen students with loaded backpacks walking to bus stops that are far from their homes — children walking with all that weight on their backs in cold, slippery, snowy and wet weather. Expanded busing is essential.
The safety and security concerns within certain buildings are very real. When schools within the corporation were built, the safety issues being faced today were not present. However because of tragedy at schools around the nation, it is time to secure our buildings for the protection of the students and staff.
We will pay the tax needed for these safety issues for a period of time. The tax will then go away. Some people say added taxes never go away. In reality, it all depends on who is imposing the tax. This one really does disappear. It isn’t a promise; it’s a law.
Under the leadership of our new Superintendent, Dr. Robert Haworth, and a very energetic and fiscally responsible school board, there are tremendous improvements in the Elkhart Community Schools. Grades are improving, graduation rates are increasing and there is a feeling of vitality throughout the system. Let’s keep this going by giving them what they need to graduate the best students possible.
BOB AND BOBBIE MEYERS