1,300+ ballots still outstanding in primary election as Bellbrook district awaits final results

Bellbrook-Sugarcreek levy tight with 270 votes deciding levy issue

Election 2020: Bellbrook-Sugarcreek schools levy

BELLBROOK — As the county reports thousands of ballots still outstanding in the primary election Bellbrook schools will have to wait until Greene County finalizes its results next month to see if the district’s levy passed or failed.

The district was requesting a 5.7 mill operating levy, which would cost the owner of $100,000 worth of property $200 additional per year in property tax.

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Preliminary results from the Greene County Board of Elections shows the levy failing by 270 votes.

Greene County reported 1,329 absentee ballots are still outstanding that were requested by voters in Sugarcreek Twp. and Bellbrook. Those ballots, which would have had to be postmarked by April 27, can still arrive at the board of elections by May 8 and be included in the final vote tally.

There are also 57 provisional ballots that could be potentially counted, Greene County Board of Elections Director Llyn McCoy said.

“It’s going to provide a critical lifeline for us to provide some financial stability so that we can really get back to focusing on the educational piece of school rather than the financial piece,” said Bellbrook-Sugarcreek Schools Superintendent Douglas Cozad.

A key opponent of the levy, John Stafford, posted on his Vote No Facebook page late Tuesday claiming a victory for people against the levy.

“We have defeated the school Tax levy,” Stafford wrote in a post. “Thank you, everyone, for standing with me.”

Greene County will not finalize the votes in the primary election until May 19, when the board will certify all of the ballots received. After that certification, the final results for the Bellbrook schools levy will be released.

Cozad has said previously a failure of the levy would lead to cuts he described as a “nuclear option.”

A levy failure means even deeper cuts:

  • Increase participation fees from $200 to $300 for high school
  • Eliminate busing for BHS
  • Reduce transportation to the minimum two-mile state requirement for BMS and BCI
  • Eliminate:
  • Art at SB & BCI
  • STEM at SB & BCI
  • Keyboarding at BMS
  • Art for 6th grade at BMS
  • 1 Social Studies, 1 English, & 1 Science (outsource Biomed to GCCC) teachers at BHS
  • 2 librarian positions across the district
  • 85 paid supplementals and/or athletic positions across the district
  • Reduce district-wide staff development
  • Delay curriculum adoptions in math and science
  • Non-renew select electronic curriculum subscriptions
  • Non-renew contract with our communications consultant, Allerton Hill