Marion County Schools seeks excess levy renewal on Nov.8

FAIRMONT, W.Va. — Several counties in West Virginia will be floating excess levy elections during the Nov. 8 General Election.

Voters are being asked to approve a renewal of the excess levy for the Marion County school system. Treasurer Scott Rider said the excess levy has been in place for 75 years and a “yes” vote will not increase cost any resident.

“This isn’t an increase from what we’ve had in the past,” Rider said. “It’s just to maintain our funding, it’s been in place since 1947.”

Rider said the income from the levy supports key aspects of the district operations including transportation, maintenance, teacher stipends and free admission for senior citizens to sporting events.

“Our excess levy makes up approximately 20% of our general fund budget so it’s pretty substantial in what we can provide the students in our school system,” Rider said.

The levy has also funded the one-for-one Chromebook program, as well as maintenance for the take home technology. Additionally, the levy funds things that are not included in funding received from the state.

“The levy helps provide text books and supplies that the students need in the classroom,” Rider said. “It also helps fund some professional and service personnel positions that the state funding formula does not provide for.”

Rider said the excess levy was vital in the completion of the addition to East Dale Elementary School valued at more than $4 million. About 120 pre-K and kindergarten students from other schools in the district will use the facility that is scheduled to be completed in late November. The addition addressed a classroom space problem administrators battled for at least ten years.

“It ended up being more like a 35-percent match because costs went up so much,” Rider said. “They still gave us the dollar amount that they said they were, but we didn’t go back and ask for additional funding, but the levy helped bridge that gap.”

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