Talawanda prepares for cuts after failed levy


By Patrick Geshan

The Talawanda Board of Education will have to make decisions about cuts to advanced high school classes, school resource officers and staff positions following the defeat of a proposed operating levy with a 65.5% “no” vote. 

“With the defeat of the operating levy, our board of education will now face the difficult work ahead of determining next steps to deal with Talawanda’s impending financial crisis,” Superintendent Ed Theroux said. 

Theroux said there appeared to be record voter participation at some precincts within Talawanda School buildings. 

While voters from Hanover, Milford and Reily townships came out more than 80% against the levy, it was favored by 65% of voters in Oxford, and 40% of voters in Oxford Township. 

Voter turnout was extremely low in student-dominated precincts in Oxford, while it was between 60 and 70 percent in surrounding areas. County-wide, voter turnout was 49.8%, expectedly down from the 73.1% turnout seen county-wide during the 2020 presidential election.

“We believe voting is both a privilege and our civic duty, and we are very pleased to see our community’s participation,” Theroux added. “We are happy to see that so many people voted.”

The Ross School District, which borders Talawanda, failed to pass an operating levy for a second time, with a 61.3% “no” vote. Voters came out 64% against the Ross levy when it was last on the ballot in August. 

Turnout was heavy in areas surrounding Oxford, and the Butler County Board of Elections reported no problems. While some voters encountered lines at precincts when polls opened on Election Day, Director Nicole Unzicker said that officials quickly processed those voters. 

“It seemed to be a smooth day at the polls and here at the Board of Election office,” she said. “We are very pleased with how Election Day went here in Butler County.”

National voter turnout was up compared to past midterms, particularly in several states with competitive U.S. Senate races. Republicans dominated races in Butler County, winning every race with no less than 62 percent of the vote. For complete results, see the board of elections website here.