The Press Newspaper
Lake Township residents will see the benefits of additional revenue for road repairs, according to Melanie Bowen, a township trustee, who says the number of road projects will increase this year.
The trustees Tuesday approved annual appropriations for 2011 totaling approximately $5.4 million, including $1.2 million for the general fund and $377,500 for the road improvement fund.
Township voters in November replaced a 1.5-mill property tax levy for road improvements and approved an additional 1-mill levy. Both taxes will be levied on current property values.
“The number of roads we do this year will be up,” Bowen said.
In recent years, the township has only been able to complete 1.5 miles of road repairs annually, the trustees have said. That’s about half of what the repair program covered 10 years ago.
Then costs for material began climbing sharply to the point it cost the township about $60,000 a mile for repairs in 2009.
The township budget this year will feel the strain of costs stemming from last June’s tornado that destroyed the administration building on Cummings Road and other property at the site, including vehicles.
Cost over-runs are estimated to reach $100,000 to $150,000 for refurbishing the parking lot and a driveway to a garage at the new building as well as other improvements to the grounds that are not covered by insurance, according to Bowen, who said much of the cost for a metal roof for the building also won’t be covered by insurance.
But the roof will last longer than conventional shingle style roofs, she said.
The trustees also plan to purchase new radios for the 60-plus members of the fire department but intend to seek grants to help cover those costs.
The appropriations include $714,500 for the fund covering the department expenses and $275,000 for emergency medical services.
The fund for police department operations was set at $1.5 million.
The trustees are also bracing for a loss of local government funds from the state as Gov. John Kasich’s proposed biennial budget – unveiled last Tuesday – reflects spending cuts to offset a projected deficit of about $8 billion.
In other business, Bowen read a letter from the Wood County Board of Commissioners that establishes load limits on two township roads that have bridges. A 12-ton limit goes into effect immediately for the Lemoyne Road span and a progressive limit from 14 to 29 tons is in effect for a Collins Road bridge in the Village of Millbury. The limit on Collins Road covers various axle types.
The trustees Tuesday went into executive session for about an hour to discuss personnel issues in the fire department but took no action.