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Stow-Munroe Falls passes school levy, ballot questions approved

Voters in the Stow-Munroe Falls school district narrowly approved a multi-million-dollar levy to pay for the next decade of operations, according to unofficial election results released by the Summit County Board of Elections Tuesday night.

School leaders had stressed the new tax was essential to avoid cutting teachers and increasing class sizes. The previous budget has been fixed for more than a decade and was not sustainable with inflation costs.

“We greatly appreciate the support of the community and all of the people that worked so hard to pass this levy for the benefit of our students to maintain the school district that our students, families and community have come to expect,” Superintendent Tom Bratten told The Spotlight.

The levy passed 9,084 votes to 8,104, according to the first-night tally, which does not include all votes, such as those on provisional ballots.

Meanwhile, Silver Lake homeowners will see a continuation of their taxes paid to the Cuyahoga Falls school district, as 59% of voters supported a renewal levy. 

Ballot questions in Stow, Munroe Falls and Silver Lake

In other local questions, voters in Stow, Munroe Falls and Silver Lake tended to side on the affirmative, approving multiple charter amendments.

Stow voters were asked to revisit term limits for elected officials with two different issues on the ballot – 25 and 26 – seeking to let candidates fulfill partial terms of office inherited by predecessors without counting against the city charter’s eight-year limit.

Both issues passed, meaning the one with the higher popular mandate would take effect: in this case, the citizen-led Issue 25, which does not include city council members in the scope of the law. Issue 25 applies to the mayor, finance director and law director. 

Issue 25 passed 10,870 votes to 3,400 while Issue 26 passed 9,649 to 4,288.

Proposals for a five-year capital expenditure plan to be established in Stow, put forward by council president Jeremy McIntire, also passed by an overwhelming margin of 10,932 to 2,315.

In Munroe Falls, voters were asked to decide on two technical charter issues related to the city’s fire chief and parks and recreation board, which passed easily.

They also backed Issue 21, to allow the city to hold virtual council meetings when necessary.

And in Silver Lake, residents had one issue on the ballot – Issue 31 – to rename the position of village Solicitor to Director of Law which was supported by 83.6% of voters.

Roegner and Weinstein head to Columbus

Summit County split its ballot between Republicans and Democrats in the state senate and house of representatives that cover Stow, Munroe Falls and Silver Lake. 

In the 27th senate district, Kristina Roegner, a Republican, narrowly beat out Patricia Goetz by 72,487 votes to 69,156, a difference of about 2 percentage points.

And in the 34 state house district, Democrat Casey Weinstein defeated Beth Bigham, 27,174 to 23,373.