PIQUA — Piqua voters approved a five-year, 3.0-mill permanent improvement levy during Tuesday’s primary election, according to unofficial election results.
Approximately 70 percent of voters supported the levy, with 911 votes for it and 381 votes against it.
Originally approved at 3.5 mills in 1994, the current millage stands at 4.0, with 2.2 mills going to renovations at Piqua Junior High School, and 1.8 to the PI levy. Under the new plan, the 2.2 mills would be eliminated, and 1.2 mills added for renovations to the high school, for a total of 3.0 mills.
“We’re very grateful to the voters and supporters,” Piqua City Schools Superintendent Dwayne Thompson said.
Thompson previously noted that though the district sought additional millage, the levy will actually decrease taxes. “We have not historically asked for more than we need,” he said. On Tuesday night, Thompson reiterated that properties taxes will decrease.
According to Thompson, $678,946 in annual PI funds would be generated, minus $200,000 for annual bus purchases and $315,411 for the high school HVAC system, leaving $165,505 for maintenance and safety work.
Thompson said that these funds will allow the district to maintain the older buildings of the district, which include the high school that is approximately 40 years old, the junior high school that is approximately 20 years old, and Alexander Stadium that is 18 years old.
“We are very excited about that,” Thompson said. He added, “I believe these buildings are great facilities.” By investing in their maintenance now, Thompson said that they will be able to extend the longevity of their usage.
Examples of recent maintenance and safety work in the district includes the ongoing roof replacement project at the high school; replacing original student furniture; replacing fire alarm systems; renovating front entries at the 40-year-old high school and 20-year-old junior high for safety purposes; and making drinking fountains ADA-compliant.
As a lifelong resident of Piqua, Thompson said that he was very appreciative of the support of the levy and the district.
“We will do our very, very best to use tax dollars wisely,” Thompson said.
Reach Sam Wildow at firstname.lastname@example.org. © 2019 Miami Valley Today, all rights reserved.