Reynoldsburg News


Local issues include fire levy, charter changes


In addition to national, state and county races and issues, Reynoldsburg residents will vote Nov. 6 on a Truro Township Fire Department levy and four city charter amendments.

The outcome of a U.S. House race and an Ohio House race could also change the make-up of Reynoldsburg City Council: Republican Chris Long is among four candidates seeking election to the 3rd Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Others in the race are Democrat Joyce Beatty, Green Party candidate Bob Fitrakis and Libertarian Party candidate Richard Ehrbar.

Councilman Nathan Burd, also a Republican, is facing Democrat Heather Bishoff in the race for the 20th District seat in the Ohio House of Representatives.

If either or both are elected to higher office, the remaining members of council will be responsible for choosing someone to serve out the remainder of their terms.

If approved, the Truro Township Fire Department's 3.9-mill levy on the Nov. 6 ballot would cost homeowners an additional $119 per year in taxes for each $100,000 in property value and generate $1.8 million per year, according to Administrative Battalion Chief Jeff Sharps.

Fire Chief Steve Hein said he hopes township residents understand the tax issue is to continue emergency services for the next six to eight years and to staff a full-time paramedic ambulance on the west side of Truro Township. It's not about increasing staff levels or increasing firefighters' incomes, he said.

Hein said the state's elimination of tangible personal property taxes and cuts in the Local Government Fund resulted in a loss of more than $1 million in revenue. The department responded by instituting a pay freeze for 2013, increasing employees' share of health care premiums and choosing not to fill some staff vacancies.

The four Reynoldsburg charter amendments would, if approved, no longer mandate that the city hold a primary election if there are no contested races; allow the city attorney to serve as legal counsel for Reynoldsburg City Schools; would prevent the city development director from voting as a member of the planning commission; and would prevent the development director from voting as a member of the Reynoldsburg Board of Zoning Appeals.

Voters will decide the fate of State Issue 1, asking whether there should be a convention to revise the Ohio Constitution; State Issue 2, seeking to create a state-funded commission to draw legislative and congressional districts; and Issue 56, a Franklin County Office on Aging tax levy replacement and increase totaling 1.3 mills in support of senior services.

Reynoldsburg residents also will vote in these races:

* Franklin County Commissioner: incumbent Democrat Paula Brooks or Republican James M. Pfaff.

* Franklin County Sheriff: incumbent Democrat Zach Scott or Republican Mike Herrell.

* Franklin County Recorder: Democrat Terry L. Brown or incumbent Republican Daphne Hawk.

* Franklin County Treasurer: incumbent Democrat Edward Leonard or Republican Julie Hubler.

Residents who live in the portion of Reynoldsburg that is in Licking County will vote in these races:

* 71st Ohio House: Republican Jay Hottinger or Democrat Brady Jones.

* 72nd Ohio House: Democrat David H. Dilly or Republican Bill Hayes.