GREENVILLE — The City of Greenville is going on record to support passage of a .45-mill levy for emergency communications on the November 7 ballot.
During Tuesday night’s meeting, Safety/Service Director Curt Garrison read a letter, which will be sent to Greenville residents, explaining the city’s position on the levy, listed as Issue 3 on ballots countywide. The levy is designed to fund fire, police and EMS communications equipment, specifically the purchase and maintenance of MARCS (Multi Agency Radio Communications System) radios and associated usage fees.
Darke County has already announced it will transition to the MARCS radios by April 2018, whether or not the levy passes. If the levy is approved by voters, it will pay for equipping all emergency agencies within the county. If it does not, each municipality will be responsible to come up with funding in order to be compatible with other agencies both within and outside the county.
Garrison said if the levy fails, the city would need to spend $37,000 per year for the next five years to be fully operable with the new radios and having to pay for the radios could cause some projects to be put on hold.
“The issue of upgrading the communication system is a county issue,” the letter reads. “While some agencies may be able to absorb the cost of new radios, over time, others may not. As a county, when we or our neighbors call 911, we expect nothing less than that the appropriate someone will respond to our need.”
The letter points out the cost to the owner of a property valued at $100,000 will be approximately $15.75 per year if the levy passes.
Councilman Leon Rogers, pointing out that counties surrounding Darke County are already on the MARCS system, said “We’re kind of behind with what we do as far as our communications.”
“When a situation arises, you need communication,” said Councilman Todd Oliver. “I don’t know how you can put a price tag on that. And to be able to talk within the county from one agency to another, be it a blizzard or be it a single situation, sometimes you’ve just got to say what the need is, and the need is to have reliable communication.”
Council approved a number of legislative measures, including ordinances establishing a salaries at Grade 20 for the Superintendent of Streets and the Street Department Superintendent effective September 11, 2017. Each of these passed by a 5 to 2 vote, with Oliver and Rogers voting against them.
Council voted 7 to 0 to authorize $2,000 to fund the feral cat trap, neuter and return program with the Darke County Humane Society through the end of 2017.
Among other items approved unanimously by council were:
- An ordinance allowing transfer to the Sewer Disposal Fund in the amount of $35,000 to cover higher than estimated costs in gas, oil and vehicle repairs.
- A resolution authorizing sale of no longer needed equipment from Greenville Police Department on govdeals.com.
- A resolution authorizing the donation of no longer needed computers to Greenville City Schools.
- A resolution authorizing a contract with Hull & Associates for professional consulting services.
- A resolution authorizing the safety/service director to advertise for bids for a roof replacement at the Greenville Police Department building.
Greenville City Council meets the first and third Tuesday of each month at 7:30 p.m. The public is welcome to attend and address council. Meetings may be viewed via livestream or seen the following day on the City of Greenville Ohio Youtube channel.
The writer may be reached at 937-569-4314. Join the conversation and get updates on Facebook search Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com
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