The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Editorials

February 9, 2013

Vote Yes today on Fayette Schools levy

 

Fayette County voters will head out to all 39 voting precincts today to decide whether or not they will renew for five years an excess levy that generates approximately $9.3 million annually or 14 percent of the school system’s operating revenue.

We strongly support the passage of this levy and encourage Fayette County citizens to go to the polls and vote yes.

To take a position in favor of taxation isn’t always very popular and given the recent troubles that have been at the forefront for the Fayette school system, some may rightfully question this stance.

But a look at the facts clearly show the children will be the ones who benefit and it is in the best interest of the community at large — preparing the next generation.

Fayette County is beginning to experience a growth cycle that will help to propel its economy for decades to come.

This summer the Boy Scouts of America will host its first Jamboree at the Summit Bechtel National Scout Reserve near Glen Jean. The spin-off from The Summit, especially in terms of development during the next 20 years, will be major.

In order for Fayette County to leverage that opportunity to the fullest, a strong, progressive education system has to be present.

The excess levy that’s being decided upon provides funding for a plethora of items and programs including recruitment and retention of qualified personnel, free textbooks and additional support for science and math, reading, industrial arts and career education, 21st century technology curriculum, special education, music, art, family and consumer science, preschool, busing for athletic teams and other extracurricular activities.

Safety, security, maintenance, capital improvements and a free feeding program are also part of the levy call.

The benefits are expansive.

Without the levy, the cuts that would have to be enacted would be devastating. Many of the aforementioned services and programs would only be a shadow of what they currently are; many would simply be gone.

Progress can sometimes be painful and there is always a price that must be paid.

In this case, a brighter future for Fayette County depends largely on passage of this excess levy.

Vote yes.

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