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Great Parks Board Approves Levy Request For November Ballot

Tana Weingartner
Farbach-Werner Nature Preserve is one of 21 parks and preserves in the Great Parks of Hamilton County system.

Great Parks of Hamilton County will ask voters to approve a new levy in November. Park Commissioners Thursday morning signed off on an additional 0.95 mill levy request. Parks CEO Todd Palmeter says the 10-year levy will help pay for improvements and infrastructure in the 21 parks and preserves.

"We've done studies and looked at our infrastructure and our needs: Over $100 million just for infrastructure alone," he says. "In order to be able to tackle a big part of that, we need additional funding." 

Under the levy, homeowners would pay an additional $33.25 a year per $100,000 of home valuation.

Palmeter says there will also be a review of park fees, and an effort to raise private donations to pay for park infrastructure and improvements.

"This is about us doing more for the public. The parks are their assets and we want to implement things in our master plan that the public has told us they want to do," he says.

The 0.95 mill was the smallest of four options before commissioners.

"We have a lot of things that are critical to how we operate day-to-day: utilities, roads, bridges, dams, golf course irrigation systems, all of our buildings. All that needs repair and some needs replacement and this additional funding will go towards all of those areas."

Palmeter says if the levy fails, some parts of parks, trails and preserves will have to be closed because they won't be safe.

Bill Rinehart started his radio career as a disc jockey in 1990. In 1994, he made the jump into journalism and has been reporting and delivering news on the radio ever since.