June 27, 2016

Mostly cloudy

Brunswick council: Road levy on city’s May ballot

Brunswick City Council on Monday unanimously approved placing a 1.2-mill road levy on the May 6 primary ballot.

The levy, expected to generate $781,300 annually, would cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $42 a year.

The 10-year levy would be used only for repairs to city roadways, not to state or county routes that run through Brunswick, Law Director Ken Fisher said.

Because of state rules on ballot language, Council members will have to set aside how they will spend the money in a separate ordinance, Fisher said.

“Ohio law requires we can only say for general repairs or it will not be adopted by the secretary of state,” Fisher explained when asked why the ballot language didn’t include the intention to split the money among city wards. “The intentions of Council will be manifested in a resolution in the coming weeks.”

Councilman Alex Johnson, at large, said the city has never had a dedicated revenue stream for road resurfacing and repairs and promised to work to draft legislation specifying that the money collected will be split evenly among the wards.

“There will be approximately $190,000 spent in each ward each year,” Johnson said.

The city also plans to hold information meetings for voters ahead of the May election, and interim City Manager and Police Chief Carl DeForest urged residents to contact him or Service Director Pat McNamara if they want to have their input on the levy heard or if they have suggestions on neighborhood roads where levy funds could be used.

“The administration is working on some specifics about how the money will be used, and what areas need repaired,” DeForest said.

At the meeting Monday, members received support from Rich Prospal, a 39-year resident of the city, who said he is working to help get the levy passed. He said he watched for years as road conditions worsened, and encouraged residents get behind Council and the road levy.

“Now we have some city leaders who want to do something and I’m saying ‘yes,’ ” he said.

Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com.

Loren Genson About Loren Genson

Loren Genson was The Gazette's senior reporter. From August 2012 through September 2015, she covered Brunswick city and state and national government. To contact The Gazette, call the managing editor at (330) 721-4065.