ALBANY — In the sixth attempt, the proposed income tax levy for Alexander Local Schools is the closest to approval it has been to date.
Unofficial election night results show the levy being approved by a five vote margin, but 16 provisional ballots remain to be counted.
In Meigs County, voters in Columbia Precinct are the only ones who vote on the levy.
According to the unofficial results from the Meigs County Board of Elections, 300 people cast their ballots with regard to the levy. There were 158 votes for the levy and 142 votes against the levy.
Voters in Athens and Vinton Counties rejected the levy by a total of 1,019 for and 1,030 against, with the Meigs totals enough to overcome the deficit pending the provisional ballots.
While there are no provisional ballots to be counted in Meigs County, there are 16 provisional ballots to be counted in Athens County, enough to impact the outcome.
The official vote counts will take place later this month, with the results to be determined at that time.
The levy, if approved, calls for a one percent income tax on earned income of individuals residing the school district. This includes residents in a portion of Meigs, Athens and Vinton counties. The income tax would be for a period of five years beginning Jan. 1, 2020 for the current expenses of the district.
Alexander Local Schools covers a portion of Meigs County, Vinton County and Athens County. The majority of the district is in Athens County.
Previous levy attempts for the district, ranging from 1.5 percent to 1 percent had all been rejected by voters. The recent levy history is as follows:
November 2016 — 1.5 percent income tax levy failed by approximately 600 votes
May 2017 — 1.5 percent income tax levy failed by approximately 400 votes
November 2017 — 1.25 percent income tax levy failed by approximately 550 votes
May 2018 — 1 percent income tax levy failed by approximately 60 votes
November 2018 — 1 percent income tax levy failed by approximately 350 votes
The November 2016 levy attempt was the first operating levy put before voters since 1991 for the district.
Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel