Friday, March 30, 2018
The Trumbull County MetroParks Board has taken an initial step toward asking county voters in 2019 to fund the first MetroParks levy.
About 30 people turned out for an informational meeting and call for volunteers Wednesday.
Zach Svette, MetroParks operations director, said the most pressing need is for money to handle maintenance issues, such as having to replace a culvert or fixing bumps on the 17 miles of Western Reserve Greenway bike trail in Trumbull County, or replacing one of the mowers.
Svette said with the aid of a 2009 comprehensive plan written by the Trumbull County Planning Commission, he has identified $3 million to $5 million in capital maintenance projects, such as repaving the bike trail and repairing damage to a stone bike trail bridge over Baughman Creek in Bristol Township.
The MetroParks consists of 10 parks, three of which are part of the 23-mile Mahoning River Water Trail, and four hunting areas/natural preserves in Bazetta, Braceville and Mesopotamia townships and West Farmington.
Svette estimates about 300,000 visits are made annually to the MetroParks.
A specific amount of millage has not been decided, but it could be what two other counties initiated in recent years – a half-mill in Portage and Ashtabula counties, Svette said.
That type of levy would raise $1,674,491 annually and cost the owner of a $100,000 home $17.50 per year, according to the Trumbull County Auditor’s Office.
The MetroParks currently receive $95,000 annually from the Trumbull County commissioners.