News

Tax credits for Preble County Sinclair facility

In Montgomery County, we pay a property tax to support Sinclair Community College, in Preble County- Ohio Preservation Tax credits are issued to help fund additional buildings for Sinclair that Preble County residents have access to tax free.

In Eaton, a project to create many uses for the former Eaton High School, 307 N. Cherry St., was awarded a $2 million tax credit. That project will cost $12.3 million.

The building was constructed in 1926 and served students until 2004. A partnership between Miller Valentine Group and the H.I.T. Foundation will make the building home to affordable senior housing, A community-use location in the former gymnasium and auditorium, and space for Sinclair Community College programming. The tax credit allocation replaces a previous award that was approved for the project.

Source: Developer of Dayton site gets $687,500 in tax credits

Yet another reason to vote against any further Sinclair Tax levies.

The Letter to the Editor- and the one the Dayton Daily wouldn’t  publish

The Letter to the Editor- and the one the Dayton Daily wouldn’t  publish

Today, the Dayton Daily news published our short letter to the editor. Right next to a longer anti-pot piece by Bob and Hope Taft. Originally, they’d said they’d let us have 650 words- which we carefully crafted. Their reasoning for not publishing the original and the full letter, follow today’s letter. Note, they had no problem using much of our research in their really long article last Sunday.

Reader’s alternative to Sinclair levy

Since 1966, Montgomery County taxpayers have never said no to a Sinclair Community College tax levy for our county, the one with the second-highest tax burden in the state.

About a dozen years ago, Sinclair built a campus in Warren County. The school claims zero Montgomery County funds are spent outside Montgomery County and the costs of the services that they now provide in Warren, Preble and Greene County are funded entirely with the $50 extra per credit hour they charge students from those counties.

If that’s truly the case, instead of taxing Montgomery County residents with a second levy why not raise tuition $50 per credit hour, and we don’t pay any Sinclair tax?

Sinclair has zero debt and refuses to float bonds to finance capital improvements. This is unlike every other state school.

If you really want to “Make Sinclair Strong” — we the people of “Keep Sinclair Fair” www.keepsinclairfair.org suggest that you vote no on Issue 13, and for any other Sinclair levy, until they tax the residents of Warren, Greene and Preble counties as well.

— DAVID ESRATI, DAYTON

 Ron Rollins wrote this back about our long submission:

“I think there are some good points you make, but there are just as many points that seem unsubstantiated and yet stated as fact. Overall, it doesn’t feel like a guest column of this length to me. I’d be OK with it as a shorter letter to the editor, in the 180-200 word range. If you want to resubmit in that form, I’d need it back pretty quickly to run in the early part of next week.”

Ron Rollins

Here is the letter they should have run:

Montgomery County has never said no to Sinclair Community College since they started taxing us in 1966. Publicly opposing Sinclair is akin to blasphemy. Yet, it’s time to vote no, and make Sinclair stronger, despite what their expensive levy campaign says.

For the last 12 years, Sinclair has been working outside of Montgomery County; they built a real campus in Warren County, a hybrid campus in Preble and are teaching courses in Greene County- all counties that pay no taxes to support them. It’s time to Keep Sinclair Fair and demand that those counties contribute for the Sinclair that we built.

Sinclair’s administration, that has grown by leaps and bounds since Dr. Steven Johnson took over from the legacy of the revered Dr. David Ponitz, has repeated over and over that “No Montgomery County funds” have been spent in the neighboring untaxed counties. And for some reason, that patently untrue statement has been accepted by us, the residents of Montgomery County; who are struggling with the second highest tax burden in the State (after Cuyahoga).

We have seen businesses leave Montgomery county for lower tax rates in Greene and Warren County (the “fastest growing” county in the State) for the last 20 years. We have seen our local governments grant huge tax abatements to large companies as part of “economic development” – instead of realizing, that high tax burdens are contributing factors in foreclosures, business failures, and outward migration. When the “leaders” of our community say we’re building a future on “Meds, Eds and Feds”- they don’t mention that these organizations don’t contribute property taxes, forcing the rest of us to subsidize their infrastructure.

If the true costs of the expansion to other counties is really covered by the $50 more a credit hour that those students pay, by the same logic, we could eliminate the existing levy and just boost tuition by $50 a credit hour (still a great deal) and pay no property tax at all.

All of us have benefited from Sinclair, even if we’ve never attended. The dental hygienist who cleans your teeth is a probable graduate, and many nurses and home health aides have come through Sinclair. My own business has hired Sinclair grads in the past, but will no longer. A private school, SAA in Kettering, prepares students much better, in the same time. They receive no subsidy from all of us, but produce much more qualified graduates.

According to many friends who work, or have worked at Sinclair, that since Dr. Johnson took over the school is relying more on part-time, low paid temporary professors. The school has also moved from a mantra “find the need and endeavor to meet it” to “invent the need and endeavor to hype it”- if you need proof, they’ve sunk $9 million dollars to train drone operators, and $0 to train truck drivers. Look in the Sunday classified section to see which field has more job openings?

It should concern us all that increasing numbers of high school students are receiving Sinclair credits. This might be part of the reason that a Bachelors degree is now looked at as the equivalent of the high school diploma 50 years ago. Besides devaluing both the High School diploma and the Sinclair degree, it’s time that Ohio’s unconstitutional system of funding public education needs fixed first.

Another Ponitz legacy was not borrowing for capital investment. It made sense in his tenure of high interest rates, but for Sinclair not to float bonds for capital projects while interest rates are at an all time low is stupid. Sinclair is the only public education institution that is debt free- thanks to your high taxes.

It’s time to keep Sinclair fair, and strong. Ask all the served counties to share in the investment via property tax, before voting yes to another Sinclair levy.

Can you tell what’s unsubstantiated?

 

Dayton Daily news endorses big campaign cash

After rejecting our 650 word anti-Sinclair levy op-ed piece, with

“I think there are some good points you make, but there are just as many points that seem unsubstantiated and yet stated as fact. Overall, it doesn’t feel like a guest column of this length to me. I’d be OK with it as a shorter letter to the editor, in the 180-200 word range. If you want to resubmit in that form, I’d need it back pretty quickly to run in the early part of next week.”

Ron Rollins

We sort of knew our points wouldn’t make it into the Sinclair Daily News. They’ve run at least a half a dozen pro-Sinclair articles on the front page in the last few weeks.

Today, they managed to point out that only 6 of 23 community colleges get any tax levy- never mind 2 levies. However, they still refuse to acknowledge that Sinclair isn’t honest when they say no Montgomery County money is spent outside Montgomery County.

At least KeepSinclairFair.org got a mention- but, because we’ve raised less than $1,000 and aren’t spending it on Cox’s TV stations, radio, or newspaper- we’re not worthy of coverage.

But in Ohio, it’s not all that unusual. According to the Ohio Department of Higher Education, six of the 23 community colleges in the state augment their tuition revenue with property tax levies.

Sinclair is one of them, and it is asking voters on Nov. 3 to support a 1-mill levy that the school says will allow it to ramp up its health and manufacturing programs. It is the only countywide levy in Montgomery County, and would cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $35 a year.

That’s in addition to the $98 those homeowners already pay for Sinclair’s 3.2-mill levy, which passed in 2008.

Sinclair President Steven Johnson said the new money would be used to build a health center, which would house its nearly 40 health science programs and be equipped with the “latest” simulation labs and clinics. The center would be built on a parking lot between 4th and 5th streets, and attached to the Sifferlin Center.

“In order to have enough trained health care workers, and people to work in manufacturing, we need to increase capacity and we need to do it faster,” Johnson said.

The levy, which would raise about $8.5 million, would also help the school prepare students to address the “skills gap” that employers point to as a barrier to growing jobs in the region, said Johnson.“Sinclair has tremendous momentum going in workforce and job training programs like UAS, health science careers, advanced manufacturing, IT and first responders,” he said.

Maybe this is why Sinclair has received over $130,000 for their campaign from our duopoly health care system- who don’t have to pay property taxes.

But to people like Meyers, another levy request is too much to ask, particularly for those on fixed incomes.“And next year there isn’t a Social Security increase,” he said.

Meyers said if local businesses are “begging for employees” they should carry more of the burden for Sinclair’s job training programs.“

I got grandkids in the area, and I’m all for education,” he said. “But what if they want to go to another school?”

Final push

Supporters know any levy is a tough sell in a county that already has its share of levies. Montgomery County property owners, because of those levies, have the second highest property tax burden in Ohio.

Finally- our point makes it into the discussion. Remember, Warren County is the “fastest growing county” in the state- and now has a Sinclair campus- without a tax burden. We’ve all paid for 49 years- and Warren County residents only have to pay for Sinclair if they go to Sinclair- novel idea.

With just nine days until Election Day, Citizens for Sinclair — the group pushing Issue 13 — is out in full force, from taking to the airwaves to handing out yard signs and announcing endorsements.

Johnson remains confident, but he says the outcome will depend on turnout.

To ensure they get that turnout, Citizens for Sinclair has spent slightly more than $450,000 during the most recent reporting period, and has about $263,000 on hand.

More ads are planned for the campaign’s final days.

Johnson said a big selling point for the school is its value to local students.

No mention of Sinclair’s 11% graduation rate. Value? Really?

Some voters have questioned why Sinclair isn’t asking voters in Warren County — where the school opened a campus in 2007 — to pony up.

But, said Johnson, “By law, we keep it here. And it’s spent on our (Montgomery County) students.

”Sinclair officials point out that Montgomery County students pay $99 per credit hour, while students from other Ohio counties pay an additional $50 per credit hour.Currently, Sinclair pulls in slightly more than $27 million each year from property taxes.

No, this is a flat out lie. Montgomery County Students pay $99 per credit hour, plus, all of us pay based on our property value, pay for their tuition.

In Warren County- only the students who go pay.

Strengthen finances

Sinclair officials say the community college doesn’t have debt and its financial outlook is solid.

“We’ve only bought and paid for things we could afford,” Johnson said.

No, they could only buy and pay for things we pay for. And any alternative funding sources, such as issuing bonds, which is how every other state school finances capital improvements, is ignored. Which, considering the record low interest rates, borders on criminal negligence on the part of Sinclair in showing shrewd financial decisions in our best interest.

However, the school says it has faced its share of financial hurdles, including lower-than-expected levy funds as a result of falling property values.

In 2016, the college is expected to receive $700,000 less from property taxes than it did in the most recent fiscal year.

That’s one reason the college’s revenue is projected to fall by $3 million to $124.2 million from fiscal year 2015 to 2016.

Meanwhile, its 2016 expenses are expected to drop by $4.2 million, to $121.4 million.

No analysis has been provided of the growth of highly paid administrators and cuts to tenured faculty positions under Johnson. There has also been a declining enrollment in recent years, which isn’t being reported. Is it because the focus on pie-in-the-sky programs like model airplane pilots instead of truck driving programs like those offered by other community colleges- where there are real, open jobs waiting?

Aside from levy funding, the college will rely mostly on state appropriations and tuition to cover 2016 expenses. Those revenue sources also have dipped.The new levy would run for eight years. In 2017 or 2018, the college will move to renew its 2008 levy, and after that— if the new levy passes— the college would have a levy on the ballot every five years.

Sinclair says having two levies could keep the institution’s finances secure, in case one were to fail. That’s not an uncommon levy strategy. In fact, the Montgomery County Human Services levies have a similar setup.“One of things that we would like to do is not have all of our eggs in one basket, and have balanced levies and spread the risk,” Johnson said last month.

Grant Neeley, associate professor and interim chair of political science at the University of Dayton, says Sinclair and other institutions that have two levies run the risk of confusing voters.

“I think levies are confusing for most people anyway,” Neeley said.He added that it’s also possible the increase in levies could cause voter fatigue.

Local support

Earlier this month, more than a dozen local officials gathered in the Kettering Tower to announce their support for the

Sinclair levy. The gathering included politicians on both sides of the aisle.

“We don’t agree on much, but we need to educate our future leaders,” said Sheriff Phil Plummer, the chairman of the Montgomery County Republican Party.

The levy doesn’t have much organized opposition, aside from keepsinclairfair.org — a webpage that has raised less than a $1,000.

Amazing, we finally get mentioned.

The community college has had a great track record with passing levies. The school passed its first levy in 1966, and has passed each renewal since.

Johnson says that’s because Sinclair has had a good relationship with the county during its 128-year existence. In addition, Johnson said those levy funds helped the school build technical programs that rival the best community colleges in the country.

He said if the levy fails Sinclair won’t be able to expand its offerings and “we will be facing (job) shortages in some key areas.”

Local hospitals are among the levy’s biggest backers. Of the $247,220 raised by Citizens for Sinclair from July 1 through October 14, $130,000 came from the Kettering Health Network and Premier Health Partners.

“We have more employees of our hospitals, of our 33,000 employees at 28 hospitals, that come from Sinclair than any other educational institution,” said Bryan Bucklew, president and CEO of the Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association.

Bucklew says his organization provides Sinclair with a vacancy report, so the community college knows what areas are in highest demand.

“This ranges from IT to medical technicians, surgeon technicians, phlebotomist,” he said. “Those certificate and associates degree programs at Sinclair provide for great quality training and great quality employees.”

Source: Sinclair looks to levy money to close ‘skills gap’

We still could put donations to good use- buying ads on social media to explain that voting no on Sinclair levies until they tax the other counties, is what would really “Keep Sinclair Strong.”

We won’t waste your money on TV ads, convincing you that while other counties grow like crazy, we keep being asked to tax ourselves into the ground, to support Premier and Kettering Health Networks job training programs.

Largest donors to Issue 13 don’t pay the tax

Those that don’t pay, and those that get paid, were the leading donors to Issue 13, which adds a second tax levy to support Sinclair Community College. Leading the way were the two hospital systems who donated over $130,000 to the campaign. These “not-for-profit” institutions, where their C-level executives make seven figure salaries, and yet pay nothing in property taxes- find it fits their budget to subsidize the levy campaign- since they rely on Sinclair to pay for training for their employees.

If we removed their tax-exempt status, and asked them to pay property taxes, there would be no need for an additional levy. Removing tax exemptions to any company where the C-level executives make over a million a year would be a good start toward solving income inequality in the United States.

Other large donors include kickbacks from the people the campaign spent over $360,000 proving that Sinclair levy’s are good for some businesses, while making the rest of us less competitive with higher taxes Note, Burges & Burges isn’t even a local firm- with Sinclair feeling the need to go to Euclid- a suburb of Cleveland for their campaign.

Sinclair Community College levy

In Montgomery County the largest total contribution went to the Sinclair Community College levy campaign, according to pre-general election campaign finance reports filed Thursday with the Montgomery County Board of Elections.The campaign for the 1-mill, 8-year additional property tax levy raised $247,220, more than half from Dayton’s two largest hospital networks.

Combining that with money brought forward from earlier fundraising, Citizens for Sinclair spent $452,532 and has on hand $263,524 going into the final leg of the campaign. The money was spent primarily on advertising buys for television, radio, print and direct mail.

“Those employers and individuals who have contributed certainly see this as an investment in the community,” said Madeline Iseli, vice president for advancement for Sinclair and campaign executive on loan from the college. “Sinclair is about helping them have the educated and trained employees that this community needs so that we can continue to grow the jobs for today and tomorrow.

”The new operating and capital improvement levy would pay to boost manufacturing and health programming, including building a new health sciences facility.If approved by voters the new levy would be one of two used by the school for its Montgomery County programs and students. Sinclair’s other levy is for 3.2 mills and officials say the new levy would help offset revenue losses on that levy stemming from declines in property values in the county.

The largest contributor to the levy campaign was Premier Health, with $100,000, followed by Kettering Health Network, which contributed $30,000. Iseli said 40 to 50 percent of the college’s health sciences graduates are employed by those hospital systems.

“We have just been really strong partners for many many years,” said Peggy Mark, chief learning officer for Premier Health. “We get great graduates from Sinclair.

”Kettering Health Network Chief Executive Officer Fred Manchur said the company is grateful to Sinclair for educating so many of its employees and “education produces a strong local workforce.

”Other large contributors to the campaign included the Montgomery County Human Services Levy and the University of Dayton, both of which gave $10,000 each. Sinclair President Steven Johnson gave $5,000 and the levy attracted $3,000 in financial support from levy campaign consultant Burges & Burges Strategists of Euclid and $5,000 from The Ohlmann Group Inc., the Dayton marketing and advertising firm that does media buys for the levy.

The levy committee paid Burges and Burges $33,324 for services during the reporting period. Ohlmann was paid $332,871 for media buys.

Source: Issue 3 backers spend $15.3M

While the tax levy people always talk about the cost per year of a $100,000 house, the reality is, business properties have much higher values, which means this tax comes straight off your bottom line, unless of course, you are a hospital, a levy campaign, or UD- all of which pay no tax.
If we really want to “Keep Sinclair Strong” it’s time to spread the tax equitably across all 4 counties that Sinclair is providing services to, making it a strong regional player. Instead, Sinclair only taxes Montgomery County residents. Let’s Keep Sinclair Fair and vote no on any Sinclair levy in Montgomery County until Warren, Preble and Greene county share in the burden.
Here is the finance contribution report for the Sinclair Levy campaign: 2015_Pre-General_PAC_Citizens For Sinclair

The myth of “No Montgomery County Money” spent in Warren County

Keep Sinclair Fair, issue 13 ad
We love Sinclair. But, we won’t be voting yes on 13.
Why? After all, Montgomery County Residents have never said no to a Sinclair levy since 1966.
We built Sinclair for Montgomery County residents—and we’ve paid a lot for those low tuition rates.
12 years ago, Sinclair quietly built a campus in Warren County. After this, they started programs in Preble and Greene County. They claim that those campuses are paid for with different money, and that tuition is 50% higher.
But, we know you’re smarter than the college administration—they forgot to factor in the 49 years of higher taxes every resident in Montgomery County invested in Sinclair which made Sinclair what it is today.
Warren, Preble and Greene County residents don’t pay unless they go to Sinclair.
We’ve paid, and paid and paid.
Montgomery County has the SECOND HIGHEST effective Tax rate in the State (after Cuyahoga County). Sinclair Community College is 100% debt free and sitting on a large amount of cash. Smart financial types would advocate that the last six years were an ideal time to float bonds—while interest rates were at an all-time low, but, instead, Sinclair is coming back to tax you twice.
At Keep Sinclair Fair, all we ask is that Warren County (the “fastest growing county” in the State), Preble and Greene Counties ante up and pay their fair share.
So this Nov 3rd, Vote No to Sinclair on Issue 13. Sinclair can become stronger by fairly taxing all the counties where they provide service.

Meet Tri-C, which gets by with half the funding of Sinclair

Tri-C logoCuyahoga County has the highest tax burden in the State of Ohio- it also has the largest community college. They are asking for a second levy as well- but, the reality is, with both their levies- Cuyahoga County residents pay HALF of what Montgomery County residents are being asked to fork over:

The new levy was in addition to another property-tax levy still in effect across Cuyahoga County, which has the state’s largest public community college. Combined, the two levies cost the owner of a $100,000 house around $70 a year. The levies generate $106 million of Tri-C’s $192 million annual budget, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper.

Source: Is tax levy in future for Cincy State?

With Sinclair’s issue 13, the owner of a $100,000 home will pay $140 a year. Yet, property owners in Warren County, where Sinclair operates their “Courseview Campus”- pay zero.

It’s time to Keep Sinclair Fair- and vote no on issue 13. They can get by on their current levy- if they want more money, they can tax the “fastest growing county” in the State- and make things more equitable.

Tri-C tax per $100,000 of value per year

Sinclair, tax per $100,000 of value per year

Full-Time Equivalent Enrollment 2014

Tri-C Cuyahoga Community College

18,949 students

Sinclair Community College

14,417 students

 

 

Does Montgomery County’s Sinclair property tax drive away investment?

Ever wonder why The Greene is just outside Montgomery County in Greene County? Could it be because Steiner + Associates didn’t want to pay millions in taxes each year to support Sinclair Community College when they could still reach the same market.

Now, Steiner is making an even bigger investment in Warren County. Warren County has a Sinclair campus, but they don’t pay any property tax to support it.

Once retailers at the approximately $350 million Liberty Center development open the doors next month, projections call for the complex to draw more than 10 million people a year to shop and dine, according to the director of the Butler County Visitors Bureau

Source: Liberty Center to impact local crime, property value

You know how they always tell you the tax levy will only cost $147 a year for the owner of a $100,000 house? Well, for a $350 million dollar project, that’s half a million plus each year in additional property tax. If Sinclair Community College wants to provide services to residents of Butler County, it’s time they paid their fair share as well. Note- the Warren County Campus is close to the Butler line.

Remember, the Ohio Supreme Court already found Ohio’s formula for funding schools unconstitutional back in 1997, and our legislature hasn’t done anything to fix it. With increasing numbers of high school students earning Sinclair credits, we’ve got an even more screwed up system, which is unfairly burdening the property owners of Montgomery County, while Preble, Greene and Warren don’t pay a thing.

Vote NO on issue 13 and keep Sinclair Fair.

Sinclair’s financial audit

SINCLAIR COMMUNITY COLLEGE
Dayton, Ohio
FINANCIAL STATEMENTS PDF
June 30, 2014 and 2013
Prime quotes:

“The Courseview Campus Center in Mason, Ohio, now in its eighth year of operation, has nearly tripled its enrollment since its launch. As Warren County is a legislatively designated service area of Sinclair, the College continues to prudently plan and implement cost-effective educational opportunities for this growing and underserved market as evidenced by the opening in August 2013 of a second building on the campus that more than doubles its instructional capacity and greatly expands the variety of courses and programs that are and can be offered there.”

And while you or I have to borrow money at much higher rates to pay our mortgages- Sinclair is debt free.

“Pay as you go: Save money upfront and place in allocated reserves for later use in major capital expenditures, thereby avoiding debt (as opposed to borrowing now and paying later).”

With historically low interest rates, most companies are taking on debt, to lock in the savings.

We welcome your analysis of their financial position in the comments.

Sinclair levy will ask voters for new money in November

While Montgomery County tax payers have passed every Sinclair levy since 1966, the money was to provide a community college in Montgomery County. For the last 8 years, Sinclair has operated a campus in Warren County- Ohio’s fastest growing county, without a tax, and also in Preble county, without levying a tax. All we ask is that Sinclair either stay in Montgomery County, or tax other counties for use of our assets.

From the Dayton Daily News:

Sinclair Community College’s Board of Trustees voted unanimously Tuesday to take a new levy before Montgomery County voters in November — a move the college says will help it improve technology and training for growing career fields.

According to the Montgomery County Auditor’s office, the new 1 mill levy would cost an owner of a $100,000 home $35 per year. That’s in addition to the $98 those homeowners already pay for Sinclair’s 3.2 mill levy, which passed in 2008.

Sinclair pulls in slightly more than $27 million each year from property taxes. But if the new levy were to pass, the auditor’s office says the college would receive an additional $8.5 million per year.Aside from levy funding, the college will rely mostly on state appropriations and tuition to cover 2016 expenses totaling $121.4 million.

The 7-0 decision came one day prior to the county’s filing deadline.

The college plans to use some of the money to build a new health center, which would house its 37 health science programs and be equipped with the “latest” simulation labs and clinics. The health center would be built on a parking lot between 4th and 5th streets, and attached to the Sifferlin Center.

New funds also would be used to upgrade information technology and advanced manufacturing programs, and increase job placement programs.In addition, college officials say the levy would help keep costs down for local students. Montgomery County students pay $99.03 per credit hour, while students from other Ohio counties pay an additional $50 per credit hour.

“The Dayton region is changing rapidly, in advanced in manufacturing, health care and IT. We are working to make changes to adjust and align with the needs of the local economy,” said Sinclair president Steven Johnson.

The new levy would run for eight years. In 2017 or 2018 the college will move to renew its 2008 levy, and after that — if the new levy passes — the college would have a levy on the ballot every five years.

The college says having two levies could keep the institution’s finances secure, in case one were to fail. That’s not an uncommon levy strategy.

“One of things that we would like to do is not have all of our eggs in one basket, and have balanced levies and spread the risk,” Johnson said.

Apart from spreading risk, the levy would replace lost and stagnant revenue sources. As a result of the recent economic downturn, county property values dropped and Sinclair received lower-than-expected levy funds.

The college says it has watched its per-student, inflation-adjusted state appropriations decrease, dropping around 40 percent since 2000. In 2016, the college is expected to receive $700,000 less from property taxes than it did in the most recent fiscal year.

The college’s revenue is projected to fall by $3 million to $124.2 million from fiscal year 2015 to 2016. Its 2016 expenses are expected to drop by $4.2 million, to $121.4 million.

Sinclair passed its first levy in 1966, and has passed each renewal since.

College officials say, per state law, the funds would only be used at Sinclair’s Montgomery County campus.

“This levy is about keeping our foot on the accelerator as a region and as a local economy,” said Rob Connelly, chair of Sinclair’s Board of Trustees, in an email to this newspaper. “Sinclair is a vital resource and driver for our region and has grown along with this community for the last 128 years.“This levy will allow us to continue to move forward and deliver outstanding quality.”

Source: Sinclair levy will ask voters for new money in November | www.mydaytondailynews.com

The fact is, Montgomery County has the second highest tax burden in the State of Ohio. It’s time for Sinclair to look to other funding sources, either taxes in other counties, or to operate like every other institution and float bonds, especially during our times of historically low interest rates.

Sinclair tuition to go up $100 a year for full-time Ohio students

While taxpayers have been squeezed due to a down economy, Sinclair, which is heavily subsidized by taxpayers, raised tuition in Mar of 2014 to make up for falling tax revenue. Of course, shutting down operations in Warren and Preble counties- who don’t pay ANY tax, wasn’t on the table.

Nor was taking on debt to finance long term investment. Sinclair continues to operate debt free- without a mortgage of any sort, yet keeps expanding it’s footprint and expenses while the taxpayers bear the burden. Included in these extraneous rising costs is Sinclair providing non-degree courses to help train corporate staff for companies that receive tax breaks.

Full-time Sinclair Community College students will pay about $100 more per year starting during the summer semester, according to college officials.

On Tuesday, the Sinclair Board of Trustees approved increasing the tuition rates by $100 for in-state students. Out-of-state and international students will pay an increase of 2.9 percent or $240.

The increase breaks down to $3.33 per credit hour for Montgomery County residents, who will now pay $99.03 per credit hour. Other Ohio residents also will pay an additional $3.33 per credit hour increasing the amount to $146.28, according to information from the board.

“This is one of the most challenging issues we have to deal with,” said Trustee Robert Connelly. “We take it really seriously when adding any more burden to our students.”

Even with the proposed increase, Sinclair’s tuition for Montgomery County residents is the lowest in the state, according to information from the college.

Out-of-state and international students will pay an additional $8 per credit hour or $282.40 per credit hour.

The increases are necessary, according to the college, because of decreases in state and property tax levy funding. An additional reduction in levy funds of $1.5 million to $2 million is expected next year as a result of the county’s property revaluation process and it’s unclear how much state funding the school will receive.

“Our model is under stress,” Connelly said.

The increase is expected to generate about $1.5 million in annual revenue, according to information from the college. Even with that additional money, the college will be required to continue to look at “cost restraint, efficiencies and planned and judicious use of reserve funds,” the information said.

As part of the discussion, Sinclair President Steven Johnson spoke about the number of students who receive financial aid to help offset costs.

Of 33,867 students enrolled in the 2012-2013 academic year, 16,593 received some form of financial aid. Approximately $86 million in financial aid is distributed to Sinclair students each year.

Clark State will take tuition recommendations to its board in May, according to Clark State spokesperson Jennifer Dietsch.

Staff writer Meagan Pant contributed to this report.

Source: Sinclair tuition to go up $100 a year for full-time Ohio students | www.mydaytondailynews.com

The citizens of Montgomery County have never said no to a Sinclair tax levy. It’s time that Sinclair consider refocusing to Montgomery County or taxing Warren and Preble Counties.