BLANCHESTER — Blanchester Parks and Recreation is in need of help.
With budget cuts being made over the last few years, Blanchester’s Parks and Rec committee has put a tax levy on the May 2 primary ballot. According to committee members, this levy would help them out in multiple areas.
“We have faced budget cuts over the last few years,” said committee member Tina Fischer. “We’ve taken drastic cuts, we have no other recourse. We have no other way to seek funding for the park.”
The park levy is a property tax in which Blanchester property owners will be assessed taxes, according to Paul Jackson. It’ll go by their assessed value, not market value.
“If it’s worth $100,000, then it’s assessed value is like $35,000. That percentage is on the 35, not the 100,” said Jackson.
According to committee members, the park services no longer have an employee and they have limited funds for repairs to areas that they are in charge of maintaining,
Paul Jackson stated that they used to get small donations for events, but now Jackson has gone out to get sponsors from out-of-town businesses.
“Don’t get me wrong — businesses in Blanchester have stepped up and pitched in when they should and could,” said Jackson.
Jackson believes that people are skeptical of the levy and where the money will go. The committee assures the public that it will go benefit the villages and its residents, and that’s it.
“We as a park board are all volunteers,” said Fischer. “We’ve never gotten paid and we don’t want to get paid. We volunteer hundreds of hours out of the year. We do as much of the work as we can here on whether it’s equipment of repairs.”
Fischer stated that they do whatever they can to save a penny, including paying for their own Sam’s membership card. She’ll go to Sam’s and Dollar General, has coupons, and waits for sales to help save money on her budget.
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574