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Education

Bond issue request off May 2 ballot

Nuclear plant’s future at issue for school district in Ottawa County

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The Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in Oak Harbor.

THE BLADE
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OAK HARBOR, Ohio — The Benton-Carroll-Salem Board of Education voted this week to remove a 4.35-mill bond issue from the May 2 ballot.

According to a news release issued by the school district, members of the board were concerned by the possible “devaluation and/​or sale” of FirstEnergy Corp.’s Davis-Besse nuclear power plant in Oak Harbor, which they feared would increase residents’ tax burden if the bond issue passed.

Members of Citizens for Quality Schools recommended the decision.

The board had voted in January to place the bond issue on the ballot. If approved, the 30-year bond would have generated $40 million to pay for a new kindergarten-through-seventh-grade school next to Oak Harbor High School. The new school would have held nearly 1,000 students and was to tentatively open in 2020.

The school would have replaced R.C. Waters Elementary and Oak Harbor Middle School. Voters in August rejected a levy request. The board said in its statement it would re-evaluate placing a bond issue on the ballot when Davis-Besse’s future is more certain.

“The board believes that the need for a new K-7 building for students still exists,” the statement read. “However, the inability to clearly communicate the cost of the new building swayed the board to vote to pull the bond issue off the ballot in May.”

Contact Nolan Rosenkrans at: nrosenkrans@theblade.com or 419-724-6086, or on Twitter @NolanRosenkrans.

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