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Gahanna Tax Package Up By Just Two Votes, Remains Too Close To Call

Gahanna-Lincoln High School
Debbie Holmes

Early Wednesday morning, the Franklin County Board of Elections announced a tax package for Gahanna-Jefferson Public Schools passed by only two votes. With 14,097 "yes" votes to 14,095 "no" votes, the issue remains too close to call.

Issue 22would allow Gahanna-Jefferson Public Schools to complete phase two of its Master Facilities Plan, which means adding elementary and middle school classrooms, plus funding the building of a new high school through two tax levies and a bond issue.

Mail-in votes are still being counted, and the results may not be certain for a few days.

In a statement, superintendent Steve Barrett said he is grateful for the community rallying behind the school district.

"Our facilities are woefully outdated and overcrowded, and an additional 800 students are expected to move into the district by 2025," the statement reads.

The total 10.69 mill levy would increase taxes by $374 per year for every $100,000 in assessed property value. A 1.5-mill, 30-year levy would raise $2.5 million for facility maintenance, and a 4.26-mill levy would raise $7.1 million annually for hiring additional employees and operations.

The 37-year bond issue would raise $205.7 million for the construction of a new Lincoln High School and additions to three middle and two elementary schools.

Adora Namigadde was a reporter for 89.7 NPR News. She joined WOSU News in February 2017. A Michigan native, she graduated from Wayne State University with a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in French.