Genoa Township has downsized its proposed 2011 road improvement program to trim costs and get more life out of its road and bridges levy.

Genoa Township has downsized its proposed 2011 road improvement program to trim costs and get more life out of its road and bridges levy.

The township road levy committee is discussing the Dec. 31, 2011 expiration of its road levy and trying to decide what to ask voters for in the May election.

The township's current 0.7-mill levy will expire Dec. 31, 2011. It raises about $667,452 annually.

The department's other revenues are 0.6-mill of inside millage, which is an automatic property tax established by the state that is not voted on. Inside millage brings in about $557,974 for the department.

It also receives about $40,000 in motor vehicle licensing fees, $185,000 from gas tax and $215,000 from permissive tax.

The department is estimated to have a 2010 year-end carryover balance $1.4-million.

The township's options are to renew or replace the existing levy or seek increased millage.

Officials have said they will need at least as much revenue as the current levy brings in to continue services.

The township was planning to spend more than $700,000 in 2011 road improvements, documents from a Nov. 10 meeting show.

That number was decreased to $450,000 after trustee Rick Carfagna asked department director Bob Mathews at a Nov. 10 meeting to review specific needs on each road slated for improvement.

For each of the past several years, the township's road improvement programs have averaged about $1-million.

The township is in the process of developing an inventory of its roads and their conditions, Mathews said.

Reducing the 2011 program was further discussed at a Nov. 16 meeting.

Township administrator Paul Wise said the reduction is designed to minimize the tax burden on residents and still improve the worst roads in the township.

The levy committee will make a recommendation to the trustees in December.

Wise said renewal of the levy would need to be on the May ballot.

Though he is not certain, he thinks the committee might recommend asking residents for the same level of support.

The current levy costs property owners $21.44 per $100,000 of property value.

bbutcher@thisweeknews.com

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