MILL CREEK PARK Lower millage set for levy

The 1.75-mill levy would maintain current facilities, but wouldn't allow big projects, park board president says.
CANFIELD -- The commissioners of the Mill Creek Metropolitan Park District have decided to replace their 1.9-mill levy, which expires at the end of next year, with a 15-year 1.75-mill countywide levy on the Nov. 6 ballot.
The park officials passed a resolution to do this at a Thursday park board meeting, during which they rescinded a resolution they had passed in February to replace the existing levy with one at the same millage.
Virginia Dailey, president of the board of park commissioners, and Harry Meshel, board member, said they took into account the economic uncertainties facing Mahoning Valley residents when they opted for the lesser millage.
Quotable: "We felt the 1.75 would be a reasonable levy given the current economic conditions. We just felt that a 1.75 replacement levy would give the park district an adequate amount of money to continue the successful operations of the park. It allows us to maintain the current facilities. It's not enough money to allow new construction or any big project," Dailey explained.
The existing levy raises $4.8 million a year for the park district, and the replacement would bring in $6.4 million a year, according to Park Superintendent William Schollaert.
The existing levy is based on 1988 tax valuations of property, and the replacement levy would be based on current tax valuations, Dailey said.
The current levy costs the owner of a $50,000 home $33.25 a year, and the replacement would cost that homeowner $30.63, Schollaert said.
"How much income they may have, the cost of living, the cost of fuel, and all these other factors come into play when people make a decision on voting for a levy. Rather than go for the far end, it's frankly a little safer to go for something that's meaningful and yet realistic, and that's why we set it at 1.75 as opposed to 1.9," Meshel said.

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