Huber Heights levy could cut fire, police personnel

Huber Heights residents voice opinions on upcoming levy ballot. (Photo by: WDTN/Jake Ryle)


HUBER HEIGHTS, Ohio (WDTN) — A November ballot for Huber Heights will have a levy for an increase in income tax of .25 percent.

According to City Manager Rob Schommer, the budget at its current spending, wouldn’t be able to survive past 2015.

“And that is to reduce services or to generate additional revenue to maintain the current level of services that we have,” Schommer said.

If the levy fails–Police, Fire and EMS, general city operations, and the city’s parks and recreation will make cut-backs.

Police would cut nearly $800,000 and seven personnel from the staff. in cuts. Huber Heights Fire and EMS would cut nine positions, resulting in $725,000 in cuts.

They’re cuts that save money, but could make the difference in saving lives.

“If we have higher response times, then that could create a less safe environment for those in need of emergency medical aid,” Schommer explained.

With a cross-roads of taxes or personnel cuts — we’re asking questions to find out why the city was building a multi-million dollar entertainment center when Huber Heights is near bankruptcy.

“The music center has a completely separate dedicated funding stream,” Schommer added, “That which the funding could not be used for infrastructure, public amenities, facilities, etc.”

Schommer says the safety personnel fund must stay completely separate from the general funds budget.

Long time resident Richard Stan believes the issue could be avoided all together.

“I have not seen any information that would enable citizens to make them feel comfortable that they’re getting a return on money spent,” he explained, “At the end of the day, all of us are accountable to justify the dollars that we spend.”

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