SALEM, Ohio (WKBN) — Parents in Salem are speaking up in support of the school levy, as it’s the last chance for the district to pass the levy to build a new school.

If passed, funding from the levy would create a central K-through-8 school on property the district already owns near Southeast Elementary. Buckeye and Reilly elementary schools would be torn down.

Salem Levy Committee member Andy Black has two daughters in Salem schools, and he supports the levy.

“I want to give our kids a safe place to learn with the best technology, a place where they’ll have hot meals made for them on site — which is not a current reality — a place where parents can easily and safely drop off and pick up,” Black said.

It’s the community’s last chance to get state funding after the levy failed back in May.

If the levy passes, Salem will get $37.9 million in state money. The school would be paid for with that money, plus $10 million from the Salem Community Foundation.

“But that money is contingent on the levy passing, and so the district does not have that money in its possession,” Black said. “That cannot be factored into the official ballot language.”

If it passes, the combined funding means homeowners pay $8.8 million. The owner of a home valued at $100,000 would pay $96 per year.

Black says it’s worth it to get his kids out of aging school buildings that have plumbing, roofing and HVAC problems.

“Something has to happen. We cannot continue with the way the condition that these buildings are in now.”

It would take about 4 years to complete the new school.