Career center seeking solutions on levy issue


To our community,

On behalf of the students and school districts served by the Delaware Area Career Center (DACC), I want to thank the community for its continued support as we navigate the difficulties of our 2015 renewal levy.

As you may know, despite passing by 61 percent with more than 10,000 yes votes, the levy, which renewed funding for operations and building improvements including our planned campus consolidation, is now in limbo.

Due to a mistake at the Delaware County Board of Elections and through no fault of DACC, our levy did not appear on the ballots of the four counties outside Delaware County that we also serve.

The approximately 1,000 households eligible to vote on our levy in those counties never had the opportunity to do so, and Ohio Tax Commissioner Joe Testa invalidated our election outcome.

While we recognize the unique issues with this situation – even if every other household had voted “no,” DACC’s levy would have passed by about 9,000 votes. In support of our students and faculty, we are doing all we can to validate our levy outcome. We are deeply concerned about the impact of this loss of funding, but will work tirelessly to maintain operations without disruption.

We have asked the Ohio Supreme Court to grant the levy’s passage, and while initially the Court did not do so, we’ve filed a Motion for Reconsideration, supported by many other school and election organization leaders. In addition, we are exploring possible legislative solutions that would enable our original levy to qualify.

In the worst-case scenario, we must return to voters in our five-county area this year to ask them to again vote in favor of the DACC operating levy. It’s important to understand, this will not be an additional levy, but simply a “re-do” of the one that did not qualify.

Regardless, you have my firm commitment that our team at DACC will remain focused on providing our students with a quality learning experience and delivering essential educational benefits to our community. That is our priority.

By Mary Beth Freeman

Guest columnist

Mary Beth Freeman is Delaware Area Career Center Superintendent.

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