Leroy Township Voters Will Decide on a New 1.5 Mill Proposal on Tuesday
This Tuesday, May 4th, voters in Leroy Township will be asked to approve a new millage increase of 1.5 mills. That means if you have a $100,000 home, (assessed at $50,000) you’ll pay $75 per year or about $6 per month. Or, if you want to do your own math, 1.5 mills is $1.50 per $1,000 of your home’s taxable value. So what’s it for?
The ballot language says it would pay for fire protection services, including dispatch fees, and for maintenance and operation of township cemeteries, as well as for maintenance and operation of the Graham Lake boat ramp and park operations. If approved, the increase will raise an estimated $226,500 in the first year the millage is levied. It would be levied for 10 years.
Leroy Township Supervisor Laveta Hardish explained the decision to ask residents for the millage increase. “We are the 4th largest Township in Calhoun County, but we are one of the remaining four townships that do not have additional mileage for public safety public works. We have also the lowest local mileage rate in the County. We allocate one mil, but because of the Headlee amendment and proposal A, that has been rolled back to 3/4 of a mill. So, instead of bringing in more local revenue, Headlee prevents that as our values go up in the Township. Property values go up, and our mileage rate is rolled back, so we never can seem to get ahead.”
Hardish said the township is looking for a way to support not only public safety and fire services but also four cemeteries and a boat launch and park at Graham Lake. All of those would be funded with the additional mileage. “All of that money stays local,” said Hardish, “which is unlike any other property taxes that we collect.”
Calhoun County townships and municipalities pay for county 911 dispatch services and Hardish says those costs are going up. “This year alone in Leroy Township, we have $18,000 that we will be paying in dispatch fees, so that again would be money that instead of coming from our general fund would come out of this additional millage. But our fire Department and medical runs are really where the bulk of this money is going to go. We have an excellent fire department but we have equipment that is aging.”
Hardish says the Township is going to have to look at replacing a tanker truck at a cost of $400,000, and she says the firefighter gear is aging too. “The gear that they're wearing is 15 years old, and replacing gear for each firefighter is almost $3500 a person. The cost of their jackets alone is $1500. They're all at a point where they need replacing and we need to protect our firefighters.” Hardish admits that the gear isn’t used every day, but says as it sits, it ages.
There’s been some confusion about voting in the Tuesday election and Hardish said nothing has changed. People will still be able to vote at the Leroy Township Hall in person. The polls will be open from 7:00 in the morning till 8 at night on Tuesday. The trend being is that people prefer to vote by absentee ballot, but the polls will be open. “People are still welcome to come in this weekend to get an absentee ballot if they’d prefer. The Township office will be open Friday, Saturday, and Monday in case voters would like to vote absentee. There is a dropbox at the township office.”
Voters are welcome to call Leroy Township Clerk Nicole Hardish at 979-9421 with any questions.
- Leroy Township’s Clerk office will be open this coming weekend leading up to Tuesday’s election. Saturday, May 1 from 9 am – 5 pm
- Monday, May 3 from Noon – 4 pm