The Press Newspaper
A resolution to place a millage request on the November ballot to fund police department operations was approved Tuesday by the Lake Township trustees.
Rather than a renewal, the trustees agreed to place a 1.4-mill replacement levy before voters, meaning the levy, if approved, will be based on current property valuations in the unincorporated area of the township instead of the valuations when it was first passed in the early 1980s.
Vicki Schwamberger, township fiscal officer, said the levy is now collecting on only 0.44-mill, called the effective rate, due to a requirement in state law that reduces the millage as property valuations increase to keep the revenues generated by the levy at a constant level.
The resolution approved by the trustees states the Wood County Auditor has certified the levy would collect $220,371 annually on the township’s current valuation of about $157.4 million.
According to a news release from the county auditor’s office last year, residential properties realized an average decrease of 10.5 percent in valuations. The auditor described the decline as “a condition not seen in Wood County since the early 1980s.”
The unionized members of the Lake Township Police Department recently agreed to forgo a pay raise for the second half of 2012.
A 2 percent pay increase had been scheduled to go into effect in 2012 but the union members agreed in December 2011 to waive it for the first half of the year, citing the difficult economic times and an expected increase in the township’s cost of employee health insurance.
When the union opted to waive the increase for the first half of 2012, Schwamberger, said it would save the township about $15,000-$20,000.
In other business, the trustees accepted the resignation of Clarence Wilburn, as assistant chief with the township volunteer fire department.
Melanie Bowen, who chairs the township’s board of trustees, thanked him for his years of service.
Wilburn is also a paramedic with LifeStar, which contracts with the township for emergency medical service.