The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

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February 10, 2013

Fayette County Schools excess levy passes easily

FAYETTEVILLE — With an astonishingly favorable margin of 71 percent, Fayette County passed a proposition to continue its excess levy, which will generate approximately $9.3 million annually for the school district for the next five years.

The levy may have gotten the vote, but with more than 10 percent of Fayette County Schools’ general operating system funds on the line, the students were the real winners, said school administrators.

On Saturday a total of 1,996 individuals voted for and 807 voted against the excess levy with a voter turnout of 10.5 percent.

“Statewide, counties that have historically passed excess levy’s like these have not in very recent history. Any school system would be worried,” said Fayette County Schools Superintendent Keith Butcher. “I am pleased voters once again chose to support our school system and support education.”

With the district currently in the middle of a facilities overhaul, Fayette schools Director of Operations Ron Cantley II noted that “passing the levy helps us sustain facilities and improve security. We are grateful and humbled by the community’s support.”

Saturday night’s vote total excludes results from precinct 10 in Meadow Bridge, whose poll officials accidentally locked their certificate of results in their ballot can, said County Clerk Kelvin Holiday. The ballot can must remain locked until Friday’s canvass; however, the precinct results won’t be enough to sway the vote, Holiday said.

All but two precincts voted in favor of the levy. Precinct number 42 (Beards Fork and Robson) voted 7 in favor and 9 against the proposition. Covering the areas of Belva and Dixie, precinct 32 saw 4 votes in favor and 8 against the levy.

The halls of the courthouse were crowded Saturday with members of the board of education, central office staff, teachers, citizens and even a few students who came out while the votes were tallied.

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