AURORA — The city’s 2019 tax budget will be on council’s May 14 agenda after it was introduced at the committee of the whole’s April 23 meeting.

According to Finance Director Tim Clymer, the total tax budget in all funds is $31.62 million, with a general fund total of around $16.64 million.

"The tax budget is a tool used by the county and is prepared utilizing estimates from our five-year forecast," explained Clymer. "It is not intended to represent actual budgetary proposals from the administration, but is a starting point for the administration to work on the actual budget."

The city must adopt the tax budget by July 15 and submit it to the county auditor by July 20.

Amounts expected to be received from various levies in 2019 are: road and bridge, $531,211; police protection, $110,535; fire protection, $159,662; and fire / paramedic, $910,656.

The tax budget forecasts the city will receive $15.37 million in taxes for the general fund, with $13.64 million of that coming from municipal income taxes. There is an estimated $384,728 in the park land acquisition fund. 

OTHER MATTERS

In action at council’s April 23 session, members approved an amendment to the "employees generally" ordinance, which includes Marie Lawrie taking over the planning-zoning-building department administrative assistant’s post when Corrine Craine retires effective June 1.

Lawrie will receive $21.89 an hour. "She is ideal for this position," said Councilman Harold Hatridge. "She is a real team player."

Council also approved the purchase of a 2018 Ford Explorer 4x4 from Liberty Ford and the sale of no longer needed portable radio equipment to the Mantua Shalersville Fire Department for $1,800.

Also OK’d was the road dedication plat for widening of Route 43 in front of McMaster Carr’s warehouse, which is under construction at 1200 S. Chillicothe Road, and the submission of unpaid lawn maintenance invoices to the Portage County auditor for inclusion on owners’ property tax billings. The total amount invoiced is $2,216.

A final item approved was a contract with Northeast Ohio Trenching Services for the repair of a retention pond on Page Road at a cost of $73,296.

Service Director Harry Stark reported the pond is on the west side of Page Road near Bartlett Road. He said seven bids were received, with Northeast Ohio Trenching’s being the lowest. He added the work should take about 30 days.

Engineer Justin Czekaj said the pond serves a good portion of the southern industrial zone. The dam will be breached, but no dredging is planned, and controls will be in place to prevent silt runoff into Sunny Lake, which Councilman Jim Vaca noted was a problem a few years ago.

Chief of Staff Karen Aldredge, filling in for Mayor Ann Womer Benjamin, said $50,000 has been appropriated in this year’s budget for sidewalk repairs in the STAR (Sidewalk Transitional Assistance Repair) program, with the application deadline being June 1.

Hatridge pointed out bricks at $50 apiece are still available for placement at the Veterans Memorial, and residents can get forms from the parks and recreation office.

Councilman Dennis Kovach urged residents to slow down when driving around the city now that warm weather has arrived. "We’ve had problems with speeding and drivers going through red lights, and we don’t want to see any serious accidents or deaths because of it," he said.

Reporter Ken Lahmers can be reached at 330-541-9400 Ext. 4189 or klahmers@recordpub.com