September 19, 2014

Elyria
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Brownhelm Twp. ambulance levy fails by 4 votes

Voters in Brownhelm Township defeated a levy to increase funding for fire and ambulance services Tuesday by four votes, unofficial results show.

The levy was a five-year additional 2-mill levy that would have raised $97,000 for the township’s ambulance and fire services.

On Tuesday, 92 voted against the levy and 88 for, or 51 percent to 49 percent, which is outside the mandate for an automatic recount.

As a result, the township will need to cut other services like road repairs, said BrownhelmTownship trustee Gregory Abraham, if it wants to continue ambulance and fire service as is. Alternatively, he said, homeowners will start being billed every time they call for a fire truck or an ambulance.

Abraham said the township has been using money from the general fund to pay for the fire and ambulance services. Since that fund has been shrinking in recent years, he said the township doesn’t have enough funding to pay for those services and were hoping residents would see the need.

“I’m not sure what’s going to happen at this point,” Abraham said, adding that he would need to meet with other township trustees to discuss whether to bill residents for their services or reduce road repairs.

Abraham said he favors putting the levy back on the ballot in November.