ELYRIA — Lorain County commissioners on Wednesday approved adding levies to the May ballot asking voters to raise property taxes to bring in money to fund Lorain County Transit and the Lorain County Drug Task Force.
The 0.04-mill transit levy, if passed, would bring in roughly $246,000 annually and be used to expand LCT’s services, which have been reduced as the commissioners have struggled with reduced revenue.
“This will shore up some funding needed to keep transit going and maybe expand some routes,” Commissioner Lori Kokoski said.
The Drug Task Force levy, would be for 0.08 mills and would generate around $492,000 per year. It would supplement a permanent levy that funds the Task Force and the county’s drug analysis lab.
Task force Commander Dennis Cavanaugh said the force, which had a budget of around $1 million last year, has seen the amount of money it has to work with reduced in recent years.
But he said the heroin and prescription drug abuse epidemic sweeping the county needs to be addressed.
The May ballot also will see a 1.6875-mill replacement levy to fund Lorain County Board of Developmental Disabilities’ Murray Ridge Center.
Voters in Vermilion will weigh in on a 0.5 percent income tax increase and Sheffield Lake residents will get a chance to vote on a 0.5 percent earned income tax increase.
Avon is asking voters to renew levies for street maintenance and repair and for the city Parks and Recreation Department.
North Ridgeville and Amherst school districts are both seeking renewals for emergency requirements.
Amherst also is asking that a levy for general permanent improvements be renewed.
Avon Lake, Black River and Columbia all are asking voters to approve new levies.