Hubbard Schools emergency levy defeated

Hubbard School Superintendent Raymond Soloman, left, and School Treasurer Amber Babik, watch election results Tuesday at the board of education offices Tuesday,

HUBBARD — Despite a campaign to educate voters on the need for a 7.1-mill operating levy to replace funding lost from the state, voters in the Hubbard School District defeated the issue in Tuesday’s general election.

Unofficial and incomplete results from Trumbull County Board of Elections have the levy failing 55 percent to 45 percent. A small section of Hubbard schools is in Mahoning County, with 34 voters casting votes there with 68 percent against to 32 percent for, according to unofficial and incomplete results from the Mahoning County Board of Elections.

Ben Kyle, one of the levy committee members, said the committee made its case to the voters through public meetings and door-to-door canvassing.

”It wasn’t meant to be. We presented our case and showed that the levy was needed to replace what we are not getting from the state,” Kyle said, noting he suspects it is a tough financial decision for many people.

Kyle said it will next be up to the Board of Education ”to take a hard look” and decide what direction to go next.

Superintendent Raymond Soloman praised the efforts of the levy committee in getting the message to the voters.

”It was an entire community that worked together,” he said.

Soloman said previously if the levy did not pass he, school administrators and the board will look at where cuts will need to be made, including possibly busing, athletic programs, college credit courses at the high school and extracurricular activities.

This was the first time since 2001 that Hubbard school district asked the community for new money to help continue providing the current programs, courses and services offered to students.

The 10-year, 7.1-mill emergency operating levy would have generated $1.4 million annually, which is the same amount district officials said the school system has lost in state funding since 2009. Soloman said the district has been ”good stewards of taxpayer dollars,” carefully considering options and making cost-saving measures before reaching out to the community for more funding.

Soloman said the district has received support in past years from residents on a bond issue for constructing new schools and with renewal levies.