Residents react to yard signs

The Bowling Green school levy signs in the front yards of Greenbriar’s tenants have been causing a stir among students renting from the company.

President of Greenbriar Inc., Robert Mauer, said the company is trying to inform tenants about the levy. The signs in the yards of Greenbriar properties are not in favor of the school levy.

“We’re asking people to take a good look at the levy on the ballot,” Mauer said.

The president of the Board of Education for Bowling Green city schools, Ellen Scholl, said the levy is going to be a property tax levy and will come out to be around four million dollars a year. Scholl said the money would go to programming and paying salaries. The levy will be on the May 7 ballot.

“We’ve cut 49 positions over the past five years,” Scholl said. “When your state cuts your budget and gives local money to charter school students, that total comes from our local budget and is really hard to keep up.”

Senior Courtney Tomlinson is an education major, and said the sign has been up in her yard for about two weeks.

“I don’t know much about Bowling Green’s school levy, but Greenbriar put the sign up without asking,” Tomlinson said. “We felt a little invaded.”

When tenants rent from Greenbriar, they have the right to put signs in their yard too, Mauer said. The company provides yard maintenance for the tenants, unless the tenants do the yard work themselves or hire a company to do so.

“We reserve the right to take care of the yard,” Mauer said. “We maintain all the exterior of the rentals. We feel we have a right to put the signs in the yard as a landlord.”

Mauer said the reason for implementing the signs against the levy is because the real estate business as a private industry can’t afford to have the levy pass.

“We’re for education and we’re for good schools,” Mauer said. “I think that the unpaid sick leave amount is not a necessary expense.”

Senior Ryan Mitchell is an education major as well. When the sign was implemented in his yard, his roommates changed the sign to favor the levy and put a “say yes” sign right next to it.

“I know why they did it, it’s just kind of a shot in the foot,” Mitchell said. “I think it’s good for the community to back the school’s levy. Apparently, my roommates don’t like the sign either.”

Greenbriar has put the signs up in quite a few yards already, Mauer said. If tenants ask the realtor to take the sign out, Greenbriar will remove it.

“We put them in places where they won’t hurt anyone, they don’t obstruct any of the grass,” Mauer said. “We don’t ask tenants if they agree. They rent the apartment, not the yard.”

Mauer said he has read letters from people who are objecting about the signs being implemented. While the signs aren’t permanent, some tenants think the realtor should have informed the renters before placing the signs.

“I think they should ask first,” Tomlinson said.