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Passage of Taylor levy is critical to its schools

It is essential that Taylor County voters who are in favor of continuation of the county schools' excess school levy must visit the polls this Saturday to indicate their approval, rather than assume that because it is one of the longest-running continuous levies in the state that the outcome is assured already.

The five-year levy, if approved, is expected to generate $5,120,995 over the entire period, or $1,024,199 per year. If passed, it will be renewed as of July 1, 2001 and will be in effect through June 30, 2006. The levy rate -- 50 percent of the maximum allowed by the state-- has not changed, according to Richard Teagarden of the school system's levy committee.

The money generated from the excess levy is used to buy instructional equipment and teaching supplies, in addition to library books and textbooks, Superintendent Jane Reynolds said.

As we see it, considering the list of programs that would receive funds from the levy, Taylor County residents can ill-afford to reject the levy or stay home from the polls and believe that passage is "in the bag." The fact is that with declining enrollment having an adverse effect on state funding, county school systems in the Mountain State need every dollar of funding they can get, Teagarden stressed.

A run-down of what the levy pays for in Taylor County each fiscal year appeared in a story in the Sunday Exponent-Telegram on January 14. The story further listed what the excess levy, if approved, will generate.

Any dollars collected in excess of the expected annual amount are to be used for capital improvements, technology and preventative maintenance.

We urge Taylor County voters to show up in force at their designated polling places this Saturday to approve the excess school levy, continuing it for another five years.

Robert F. Stealey

Telegram Editorial Board chairman

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