Why Levy requests are down

Gongwer reports

Fewer than normal school and library issues will appear on the March primary ballot and advocates suspect the cause was confusion surrounding when Ohio would hold the election.

A partisan dispute over the drawing of new congressional district maps had Ohioans for a time scheduled to vote in two primary elections before a compromise map established a single Mar. 6 primary date. (See Gongwer Ohio Report, December 14, 2011)

Among the 465 issues appearing on the March 6 ballot are nine bond issues, 280 tax requests, 124 local liquor options, nine combination questions and 43 miscellaneous issues, according the secretary of state.

Schools as usual make up the brunt of issues with seven bond requests, 85 tax levies, seven combination bond-tax issues, two combination income tax-bond issues, and 11 tax changes, according to the SOS.

The number of school levies is down, however, from the last presidential primary election, Ohio School Boards Association Director of Legislative Services Damon Asbury said. Whereas Ohio's 2008 primary saw 191 issues, only 112 funding requests are up this year.

"I think the numbers this year at least for this March primary may be a little lower just because of the confusion that districts were experiencing back in November, December when it wasn't clear whether we were going to have a March primary or a May primary."

The more likely explanation is that fact that the Republican presidential primary is contested and will attract lots of conservative voters who typically do not support school funding issues.

We published a full list of the school levy issues that will appear on the March 6th primary ballots, here.