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Local Medina County News

Election 2017: A quick recap of some of the issues

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Medina County voters will determine the outcome of a variety of local issues on the Nov. 7 ballot this year, including requests for village operating funds; support for several fire/EMS departments, safety forces and road/bridge maintenance; and a Brunswick charter amendment.

Issues on the ballot include:

Hinckley fire/EMS

Hinckley Township has a 1-mill additional levy for fire/EMS service on the ballot. If approved, the levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $35 per year and generate $322,800 a year.

Fire Chief Mel Morgan said funds are needed to increase staffing at the fire station and to replace aging equipment.

“Having extra manpower in the community is important to me,” Morgan has said. “We need to be prepared to increase our staffing rather than not be prepared for that demand three, five or 10 years from now. I don’t want a tragedy to happen and we be questioned why we’re not prepared.”

Homer requests

Homer Township has a 1.5-mill, five-year renewal levy for current expenses on the ballot. It would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $39.93 per year and generate $38,100 annually.

The renewal is vitally important to the township, Trustee Bryan Rose said. “We have to have that,” he said.

He said the money would be used to maintain township services.

Homer Township also is asking voters to approve a 3-mill, five-year additional levy for roads and bridges. This levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $105 per year and generate $89,000 a year.

Rose said he hopes the second levy passes to improve the township’s infrastructure. Levy revenue would be used for chip-sealing roads.

Lafayette police

Lafayette Township has a 2.3-mill, five-year renewal levy on the ballot to pay for coverage by the Medina County Sheriff’s Office. It’s a decrease from the levy being collected now that’s expiring at the end of the year. The Nov. 7 request would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $67 per year, down from the current $69.92, and generate $283,900 a year.

Litchfield requests

Litchfield Township has a 1-mill renewal levy for roads and bridges on the ballot. The five-year levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $22.30 per year and generate $55,700 annually.

“It’s for upkeep, maintenance, paving, buying salt, plowing and mowing the side ditches,” Trustee Dennis Horvath said.

Litchfield also is asking voters to approve a 3.2-mill renewal levy for fire and EMS. The five-year levy would not raise taxes. It would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $94.61 per year and generate $235,000 a year, the same as it does now.

Lodi expenses

Lodi has a 5-mill renewal levy for current expenses on the ballot that will not raise taxes. The five-year levy would continue to cost the owner of a $100,000 home $145.62 per year and generate $188,000 a year, the same as it does now.

“It goes into our general fund,” Lodi Mayor Rob Geissman said. “It’s for police, fire and streets. Those are the three (main) expenses. It can pay for anything in the general fund.”

Medina Township safety services

Medina Township has a 1.4-mill additional levy for police, fire and EMS services on the ballot. The five-year levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $49 per year and generate $496,000 annually.

Police Chief Dave Arbogast said there is about $1.1 million in carryover fire levy money after the township repealed its 2-mill fire levy Oct. 5. That money can be used to pay the $230,000 yearly fee to the city of Medina for fire services and for the upkeep of the two fire stations in Medina Township.

“We still have to pay utilities (at the two stations),” Arbogast said. “We also have additional expenses for heat, gas and property insurance.”

The additional levy also would pay for police operations and the yearly stipend to the Life Support Team.

Arbogast said the township would re-evaluate the levy in five years.

Spencer expenses

Spencer has an additional 4-mill levy for current expenses on the ballot. The five-year levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $140 per year and generate $38,900 annually.

Spencer Fiscal Officer Sheri Ramey said other than two small police levies, the village has no operating levies on the books. She said the police levies raise about $75,000 — far short of the police department’s budget of more than $100,000.

The 4-mill additional levy would go into the village’s general fund.

“It will be to pay bills and to maintain two parks and our buildings in the village,” Ramey said.

She said if the levy doesn’t pass, some cuts will have to be made.

Seville/Guilford fire

Seville Village and Guilford Township are asking voters to approve a 1.25-mill renewal levy for fire service. The five-year levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $36.86 per year and would generate $165,300 annually.

Renewing the levy would not raise taxes, township Fiscal Officer Ray Ruprecht said.

The levy is “specifically designed for the operation of the fire department.”

“It’s not new money,” Fire Chief Jerry Winkler said. “It will take care of operations, replacing equipment and payroll.”

The new fire station is almost complete. Winkler said an open house, ribbon-cutting celebration will be at 4 p.m. Nov. 5.

Westfield safety services building

Westfield Township and Westfield Center seek approval of a $3.3 million bond issue to pay for a new safety services building. It would cost an owner of a $100,000 home $66.50 per year and be retired at 1.9 mills over 20 years.

The money is “strictly to build it,” Westfield Center Councilman Kevin Slife said. It also will go toward furnishing the building.

“It’s definitely something we need,” Slife said.

The 12,000-square-foot safety service building/fire station would be constructed at the corner of U.S. Route 224 and North Leroy Road.

The new building would more than double the floor space of the current fire station, provide a training room, locker rooms, showers, examination room, decontamination area to clean equipment and gear, kitchen area, office and storage space.

Brunswick charter amendment

Brunswick voters are being asked to approve a charter amendment that removes the requirement that the clerk of council must be a Brunswick resident.

It reads: “The Council shall appoint an individual who shall have the title of Clerk of Council and shall serve at the pleasure of Council. The Clerk of Council shall give notice of Council meetings to its members and the public, keep the journal of its proceedings and perform such other duties as are assigned to him/her by this Charter or by the Council.”



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