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Council May Seek Taxpayer Support for Rec Projects

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Copyright 2016 Dayton Newspapers, Inc.

Dayton Daily News (Ohio)
By Nancy Bowman

Troy City Council, which pulled a proposed property tax for recreation projects from the Nov. 8 ballot at the last minute, will consider a request to put before voters in May a 0.25-percent income tax for those recreation projects plus, possibly, a second sheet of ice near Hobart Arena.

Council pulled the property tax proposal from the ballot Nov. 7 after a voter notified the board of elections of a misplaced decimal point in the ballot language that would have resulted in the tax, if approved, bringing in much less than anticipated.

Members of the city parks and recreation boards heard details of an expanded proposal during a joint meeting Tuesday.

In the end, the boards voted unanimously to recommend city council approve the revised Operation Recreation 2020 committee request to let voters decide on the income tax proposal.

A council committee will meet on the proposal at 5 p.m. Monday at City Hall

The main differences between the previous proposal and the new one are the addition of a second city ice rink that would be built north of Hobart Arena, an income tax versus property tax and a reduction in the amount of private money that would need to be raised.

The proposed property tax would have raised $1 million a year for 10 years, while the income tax would generate around $2.57 million a year, for 10 years.

The main difference is the addition of the previously discussed but not pursued second ice facility, said Patrick Titterington, city service and safety director. The existing ice rink is inside Hobart Arena, which is undergoing a $9.6 million renovation project scheduled for completion early next year.

Troy Skating Club and hockey program representatives told the boards of the need for additional ice time. The board also heard from supporters of junior baseball, soccer and the senior citizens center and several comments about the financial impact of the community that would come with enhanced recreation facilities that could be used for competitions and tournaments.

The parks and recreation boards were told there are two options: an income tax increase for five years or for 10 years. Both boards said they would leave the decision on a five- or 10-year proposal up to the council.

Projects proposed for the money would include:

?Duke Park: A nine-field baseball/softball complex; three youth soccer fields; improvements of infrastructure to consolidate park maintenance operations; expanded parking; added park entrances; and other park enhancements.

? Miami Shores Golf Course: Complete renovation of clubhouse; install outdoor practice driving range.

?Hobart Arena: Construction of second ice rink

?William Maier Senior Citizens Center: Repair/renovations to roof, siding, foundation, doors, windows and concrete; restoration of shuffleboard courts; parking lot resurfacing.

The council committee meeting Monday is expected to discuss the proposal and make a recommendation to the full council.

Alan Kappers, president and long-time member of the city park board, said he was disappointed that the amount of private contributions in the second proposal was less than the previous proposal.

However, he said, "I think it is time for the citizens of this community to step up and a tax levy is a good way to go about doing that. It has been a very long time since citizens of this community paid towards recreation and parks ... I don't know when, if they ever did, going back to when Hobart Arena was built, probably," he said.

Since then, people have looked to foundations and corporations to pay for such projects, he said. "I think it's a good idea to go ahead and at least approve this to the extent that we would be placing this on the ballot for the citizens to talk about it," Kappers said.

 
December 11, 2016
 
 
 

 

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