Wednesday, May 23, 2018
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0.5-mill renewal levy on fall ballot

Voters in the Olander Park System that includes the city of Sylvania and Sylvania Township will be asked in November to renew a 0.5-mill levy.

The levy, which has been approved by voters five times since 1986, generates about $900,000 annually, said Gary Madrzykowski, director of the park system.

During their meeting earlier this week, the parks commissioners agreed to place the renewal levy on the Nov. 7 ballot.

The levy was renewed in 2001 with 64 percent of the vote, Mr. Madrzykowski said, a turnout of overwhelming support for the park system that he called "gratifying." He said that park officials are "pretty pleased" to be asking for a levy renewal as opposed to a levy replacement that would have raised taxes if approved.

Park officials have been able to hold the line on spending local tax dollars even though major improvements have been occurring in recent years.

The park system has been able to use some of the funds from the millage to leverage grant money from the state, to be used for improvements slated next year at Fossil Park and at the 106-acre Sylvan Prairie Park east of Mitchaw Road between Sylvania Avenue and Brint Road.

If the levy is renewed, park district taxpayers would continue to pay about $25 annually on a $150,000 house. A replacement levy, which would be based on current property valuations, would cost the same homeowner about $30 each year.

"We have made pretty substantial improvements without asking for additional tax dollars," Mr. Madrzykowski said, adding that area residents are getting an "excellent bang for their tax dollars" when it comes to the Olander park system.

In addition to the city and township, the park district includes seven Toledo precincts in the Westfield Franklin Park area.

Commissioners this week awarded a bid for $518,000 to Brooks Contracting of Perrysburg for construction of Quarry Ridge Bike Trail around Sylvan Prairie Park. Work is expected to get under way by the end of July. The estimated completion date is Oct. 12. A grand opening is scheduled Oct. 22.

The project will complete the trail around Sylvan Prairie Park and then the trail will run north of Brint Road to Fossil Park, Centennial Quarry and Terrace, and to Pacesetter Park. About 2 1/2 miles of 8-foot-wide asphalt trail will be added; there already is a 1-mile concrete trail.

A grand opening is planned for mid to late October for the trail and the new park. The trail likely will draw a variety of users, including walkers, bikers, Rollerbladers, and people on nonmotorized scooters.

Also this week, commissioners decided to purchase a new dump truck at a cost of about $34,000, a cost that is significantly lower than the $50,000 estimate earlier this year, Mr. Madrzykowski said. The truck primarily will be used for hauling the aggregate at Fossil Park.

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