LISBON - With concerns about all the tax dollars from local oil and gas production ending up in Columbus, Cincinnati and Cleveland, the Columbiana County Career and Technical Center board passed a resolution Tuesday requesting state lawmakers consider giving a large portion of those tax dollars to local communities where the resources are being generated.
Board president Mike Ellyson pointed out the cities and towns in this area need to have a voice in Columbus or the tax money from fracking will all end up elsewhere. Ellyson pointed out in this area the roads are seeing more industrial size traffic and the schools are having more children to teach as others come here to work in the industry.
The school has been working to get students ready to work in the gas and oil fields, but board members are concerned schools will be receive no additional money for what is happening right outside the door.
Board members and other local officials believe they can better use some of the tax dollars here.
Assistant Superintendent Jeremy Corbisello read a statistic which said the state recently spent $66 million to try to get people off welfare and back into the labor force. Through the program at one point 257 people were able to get jobs. However, Corbisello said at the end of the 90-day probation period only 10 of those individuals remained on the job.
He noted the issue is often generational poverty, where potential employees have not been around other family members who have worked and held down jobs long term, so they are unaccustomed to what it takes.
Corbisello noted although the placement rates with jobs by the career center are not where they would like them to be, they are better than that rate while dealing with the same poverty issues. He noted he would like to see what the Career Center could do with only 1 percent of the $66 million spent by the state.
In other matters before the board:
-The board approved hiring Strollo Architects to plan repaving and paving projects in the parking areas and driveway at the Career Center. The board also approved the project to be advertised for bids.
-The board approved the disposal of a 1977 International Truck and a paper shredder.
-The board approved a donation by Specialty Fab of material drops for the welding program.