Tuesday, April 25, 2000

Butler backs Lakota on funding cap

By Steve Kemme
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        HAMILTON — Butler County commissioners pledged Monday to support the Lakota School District's efforts to persuade Ohio legislators to remove the state's funding cap for certain school districts.

        The cap cost fast-growing Lakota $7.2 million in state funding in the past two years, Lakota Schools Superintendent Kathy Klink and district treasurer Alan Hutchinson told the commissioners Monday.

        “It forces us to go to voters for an operating levy,” Mrs. Klink said.

        Lakota voters defeated a 6.74-mill levy-bond issue combination in March.

        The state funding cap limits the amount that school districts' funding can in crease from year to year.

        Lakota's student enrollment of 15,000 has increased by 500 a year.

        The cap affects 53 other Ohio school districts, he said.

        “It's not a fair system,” Commissioner Courtney Combs said. “We feel the state is punishing us because we created a healthy climate for industry and business. That's why the Lakota area is growing.”


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