MEDINA — The levy that funds drug prevention, enforcement and treatment initiatives in Medina County is up for renewal on Nov. 2. The 0.35-mill anti-drug levy brings in about $1.5 million each year. The Medina County Auditor’s Office reports it costs property owners $9.95 a year per $100,000 of appraised valuation. The levy runs for five years.
Voters originally passed the levy in 1987 and it is set to expire at the end of next year. If voters reject it this year, the Medina County Drug Abuse Commission can attempt to pass it again next year.
Brian Nowak, director of the commission, said the levy is the organization’s only source of funding. Each year, MCDAC makes recommendations of what programs should receive anti-drug levy funding to county commissioners. The commission then monitors programs that receive funding.
He said the programming the levy supports attempts to fight drugs in three ways. First, he said, it “preserves public safety” through drug enforcement. The commission partially funds the two local drug enforcement agencies — Medina County Drug Task Force and Medway Drug Enforcement Agency.
The levy also supports drug education. All school districts in the county receive some of the money for drug education. For example, it helps fund the DARE programs in several local school districts.
“It helps the community, but particularly the children and adolescents to make healthier and more positive choices,” Nowak said.
Finally, Nowak said the levy helps fund drug treatment programs that control “demand for these illegal drugs” and help people end their dependency on drugs. It provides some funding to Solutions Behavioral Healthcare in Medina — a mental health organization that provides drug treatment programs like chemical dependency counselors — and to Cathy’s House, a sober house for men in Medina.
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