COLUMBUS GROVE — “Shall the Ordinance providing for an increase in the levy on income by an additional one quarter of one percent (0.25%) annually for a period of fifteen years, effective January 1, 2019, for the purpose of paying costs of acquiring, constructing, furnishing, equipping, improving, maintaining, operating, and repairing a municipal swimming pool, parks and recreational facilities owned by the Village of Columbus Grove, and paying any debt service charges incurred in connection therewith be passed?”

So reads the verbiage of a proposed parks levy question that will appear before Columbus Grove residents on the ballot this fall. Though technically a new levy, as it will support all parks within the village and not just the municipal pool, residents will see no change in their earned income village tax rate should it pass.

This is because the levy supporting the municipal pool alone will sunset at the end of this year. That levy is also for one quarter of one percent (0.25%). In a practical sense, the new proposed levy is considered a renewal levy by the village. State law does not allow it to be presented as such since the money raised will go towards all of the village’s recreational facilities, and not just the pool.

Prior to passing the ordinance under emergency rules so that it can be placed on the fall ballot, a question was raised by council member Jim Karcher on the type of income that will be taxed. As with the previous levy, only earned income will be taxed, and those who are on a fixed income will not be affected.

Now that the council has passed the ordinance with the levy’s verbiage, it will be sent to the Board of Elections for inclusion on the fall ballot. The Village’s Parks Committee is also planning on holding public meetings to discuss proposed improvements to the parks, and Hall Avenue Park in particular, that may result from the new levy, and also how the money will be used to better maintain current facilities. The dates of those public meetings are expected to be forthcoming.