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Primary election voters approve majority of school tax issues across state

COLUMBUS — Voters across Ohio approved 64 percent of the school tax issues on the 2020 primary election ballot, the Ohio School Board Association said on Wednesday.

The passage of 63 of 99 issues marked a double-digit decrease from the 2019 primary election, when voters approved 81 of 104 school tax issues for a passage rate of 78 percent.

OSBA said 38 percent of new school tax requests were approved Tuesday, April 28, with 20 of 53 issues passing, another double-digit decrease from 2019. In last year’s primary election, voters approved 31 of 52 new tax issues for a 60% passage rate.

Strong support for renewal school tax proposals continued, with 43 of the 46 issues earning approval Tuesday, a 93 percent passage rate. That was a slight decrease from the 2019 primary election renewal passage rate of 96%. In that election, 50 of 52 renewal issues were approved.

“Tuesday’s results showed just how much citizens value their public schools, especially in the midst of a national health emergency that made voting more challenging,” Ohio School Boards Association Director of Legislative Services Jennifer Hogue said in a news release. “However, most of the issues approved were renewals; the success rate for new funding was sharply lower. That means those school systems, which already face major challenges caused by the pandemic, will be further challenged to meet their students’ academic needs and fund their day-to-day operations.”