Cincinnati School Board Sends 10-Year Tax Renewal To November Ballot

May 15, 2019

The Cincinnati Public School board voted unanimously to place a 10-year tax levy renewal on this November's ballot.

The levy will contribute roughly $65 million each year to the school district's budget. Board members extended the levy's cycle for five years because of past voter support. Board members say the levy will not increase residents' taxes.

"We are looking more long term at where this district needs to be, being one of the fastest growing districts in Ohio," CPS' board vice president Ryan Messer says. " So, we have to plan for that."

According to the Ohio Department of Education District Report Card, CPS' enrollment saw an increase of over 4,462 students since 2013. CPS says 69% of students who reside in its 91-square mile district attend one of its 63 schools.

CPS' Board Treasurer Jennifer Wagner says budget uncertainty makes it harder to create a strategic plan.

"Keep in mind that property taxes don't grow with enrollment," she says. "It makes it a little bit harder to support new growth."

Wagner says having a 10-year-plan will allow voters to hold the board accountable and the board the opportunity to implement innovative ideas.

In 2020, CPS has plans to expand Gamble Montessori High School in Westwood, which is moving into the former site of Mercy High School. Is is also set to open the Clifton Area Neighborhood School and Gamble Montessori Elementary School.