The commissioners, during Tuesday’s meeting, approved levies for the 9-1-1 technical advisory committee (TAC) and health board to go to the voters.
The five-year, .725-mill 9-1-1 levy is the first-ever attempt for 9-1-1 services in the county. Commissioners said the 9-1-1 TAC recommended the new tax, which will be used to upgrade the 9-1-1 system and current technology, as required by the state.
If passed, it would generate $862,131 annually, Huron County Auditor Roland Tkach said. It would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $25.38 per year and homestead residents $19.03.
Huron County 9-1-1 Coordinator Tacy Bond has said the the monthly cost is less than a cup of coffee. During the March meeting, she told committee members she received 10 letters from various agencies that support the levy.
Sheriff Todd Corbin has said the purpose of this levy is to strengthen the infrastructure, “support the county as a whole” and take care of the 9-1-1 costs so the system works the best it can.
Meanwhile, the 10-year, .25-mill replacement health board levy will update the current tax for the health department. Considering the levy is a replacement, it would tax home owners on the current property values of their homes, rather than when it was first issued two decades ago. This covers all of Huron County except for Bellevue.
If passed, the levy would generate $279,587 each year, Tkach said — costing the owner of a $100,000 home $8.75 annually and homestead residents $6.56.
Commissioner Terry Boose said this is not an issue the commissioners themselves are putting on the ballot; however, their approval was necessary for the levy to proceed.
Health Commissioner Tim Hollinger said the board determined the amount of money raised with the current levy isn’t sufficient to maintain the operations of an accredited public health district. The program, which will soon be required by the state, will continue to support its current programs and services. The state passed a law requiring all health departments to gain national accreditation status by 2020.
“This levy has been on as a renewal for the last 20 years,” Hollinger said in mid-June. “Our cost to do business continues to rise, just as it does for any business in the private sector. … Unfortunately, there is a financial cost associated with maintaining the level of services that are required of an accredited health district.”
EDITOR’S NOTE: Reflector staff writer Zoe Greszler contributed to this story.