WORTHINGTON, Ohio (WCMH) — Renovate, replace, and operate: That’s the basis of two bond issues on Worthington City School District residents’ ballots Nov. 8.

Some in the district are for the two issues — Issues 6 and 7 — and others are against it.  

Issue 6 relates directly to Worthington City Schools Facility master plan.  

The district seeks $234 million bond to make improvements to the districts’ two high schools. The money would help fund construction at Thomas Worthington High School, as well as some improvements at Worthington Kilbourne.

The district says improvements at Thomas Worthington include a larger cafeteria along with adding and modernizing science labs. Worthington Kilbourne upgrades include a new roof and modernizing HVAC systems.  

Erin Sogal, a Worthington schools alumna, said she supports both issues. She said it is important to continue taking care of school buildings for future generations.  

“We know we have projects coming to central Ohio: Honda, Ohio State, Intel, obviously, and the demand for building supplies and labor is only going to increase,” said Sogal. “So, it’s very important that Worthington voters pass these issues now to be prepared for what’s coming.” 

Lynn Tucker, who has lived in Worthington for 26 years, said she feels differently.  

“Is this really the environment with, you know, increased construction costs, labor costs, bond rates, is this really the time to tear down Thomas Worthington and rebuild it?” Tucker asked. 

Issue 7 is an operating levy with incremental increases over four years and would be used for day-to-day operations. That includes additional teacher salaries if there is a boost in the student population.  

“The Worthington residents have been very generous — we have passed the last three levies that are on the ballot,” said Tinucker. she ‘At this point, we’re really asking them to go back to the table to look, to see from the expense side I mean is this really necessary?”  

Sogal, on the other hand, said she sees this as an important measure for future needs.

“It’s also about helping keep them employed,” Sogal said. “We know if we wait and we’re not able to pass these issues, our district will experience some cuts.” 

According to the school district, the cost to homeowners would depend on the appraised value of their home. 

For every $100,000 of appraised value, it will cost voters $203 per year. After the first year, there’s an incremental increase of $70 per $100,000 for the next three years.  

Tucker said there’s a lot that families would have to consider at the ballot box.  

“Everybody can see the inflation when you go to the grocery store, when you go fill up your gas tank, when you wanna do a home improvement project or a necessary repair. This is a big ask,” said Tucker.  

Sogal said she thinks the district has done a good job of introducing smaller levies as opposed to larger bond issues.

“They really focus on incremental levies that help keep dollars in taxpayers’ pockets as long as they possibly can, and they really focus on reasonable amounts at reasonable intervals,” Sogal said.  

Taxpayers can find the official appraised value of their property for tax purposes on the Franklin County Auditor’s website.