WINFIELD, W.Va. — Putnam County voters will find a school excess levy question at the bottom of their primary election ballot when they go to the polls.

John Hudson

It’s a continuation of the excess levy which has been in place since 1949.

“It does not increase the tax rate and it is a continuation,” said Putnam County School Superintendent John Hudson.

The excess levy helps fund a number of different areas of the school system. It allows for the hiring of additional personnel above the state aid formula. Hudson said the additional personnel help improve student instruction.

The $23.7 million levy also covers the cost for many areas of school security. The salaries of some School Resource Officers and the cost of safety equipment and upgrades are funded by the levy. There are also dollars from the levy to supplement extra curricular activities like sports or fine arts programs in the county. Transportation to sporting events for teams is one of the costs covered by the levy. Teaching supplies and instructional materials along with programs like 4-H and the Putnam County public library also get a chunk of the funding.

Hudson said county taxpayers are getting their money’s worth out of the excess levy.

“The last two years in West Virginia among public school systems we’ve been number one on the reading and math assessments,” Hudson said.

He added it’s an important funding source even if you don’t have children in the school system. Hudson stressed the money helps enhance education in the county and becomes a huge factor for those who are looking to move into the region.

“Parents really move into this area because of the school system and the economics and community minded folks we have here in Putnam. That increases home values and it has an economic effect on all people in Putnam County,” he said.

The levy needs only a majority of the voters’ approval to be renewed.