Clark County Senior Services, New Carlisle library, 2 townships seeking levies

Nurse Wanda Atkins taking Leah McMaken blood pressure at United Senior Services in Springfield. DAN PASCIAK/STAFF
Caption
Nurse Wanda Atkins taking Leah McMaken blood pressure at United Senior Services in Springfield. DAN PASCIAK/STAFF

Clark County voters will decide whether they are willing to pay more to help more senior citizens get in-home care services.

Also, voters throughout Clark County will vote on even more localized levies. Harmony Twp. and Green Twp. are both asking voters to pass levies and New Carlisle Public Library is asking voters for more money this November.

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United Senior Services Director Maureen Fagans said the new money would help seniors.

“We’re doing the best we can at meeting the demand for our in-home services, such as providing personal care aides, meal deliveries and transportation, but our resources cannot keep pace with the growing population,” Fagans said. “The fact of the matter is we will not be able to maintain our existing level of service as this population continues to grow without additional funding.”

Fagan said its been 15 years that the senior services have been operating on a 1 mill levy. She said it is not enough.

“We have waiting lists on almost all of our services,” she said.

The proposed 1.4 mill additional levy will cost the owner of a $100,000 home approximately $49 per year , if passed. The levy will take effect Jan. 1, 2019. The agency’s existing 1 mill levy, which costs $33 annually, will expire at the end of 2019, resulting in a one-year overlap between the two.

Taxpayers will pay both levies in 2019 and then pay the 1.4 mills only after after that. The levy will last five years. The levy will generate about $944,000 extra a year for the USS.

“Due to state laws, asking for an additional levy was our only option in terms of going on the ballot this fall, which we feel is crucial timing looking ahead at the financial forecast of our agency,” said Fagans. “This additional levy is only an increase of $16 per year compared to the existing levy.”

New Carlisle Public Library

The New Carlisle Public Library is asking voters to raise their property tax so it can extend its hours.

Currently, director Beth Freeman, said the library is funded by state sales tax through the Public Library Fund and still hasn’t recovered from the 2009 recession.

“We are going to the ballot right now because our funding levels are not where they need to be,” she said. “We have had to adjust and our hours are not where they need to be.”

The library closes early on Wednesday and opens late on Thursday.

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“If we were to pass the levy we would increase our operating hours,” Freeman said. “We will be open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. 8 p.m. And we would open Friday and Saturday 10 to 6 p.m.”

The levy is .9 mills and will cost a taxpayer who owns a $50,000 home $15.75 a year. The levy will last five years and will generate about $78,000 a year.

That money would be in addition to the funding from the Public Library Fund, according to Freeman.

“We enjoy a wonderful relationship with our community,” Freeman said. “I am very enthusiastic when given the opportunity to support they will choose to do so.”

Harmony Twp. and Green Twp.

Harmony Twp. takes care of seven cemeteries that the community values, trustee Rick Delaney said.

However, these cemeteries are no longer creating enough funding to take care of themselves, he said.

“We try to mow and weed the best we can,” he said. “There are times we get help from inmates from Clark County but we have a part-time guy and then the trustees and volunteers help.”

Many people like to visit the graves on holidays like Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, Delaney said.

The Harmony Twp. levy is .7 mills and will last five years. It will cost a property owner 7 cents for each $100 valuation.

Green Twp. is also seeking a levy. The new money would employ a part-time medic, according to the ballot question.

That levy is for .5 mills and will also last five years if approved.


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