November 19, 2018

Edwards misses deadline for road millage renewal

Posted

EDWARDS TWP. — A road millage renewal will not be on the ballot for Edwards Township voters this November despite expiring, because of an oversight that caused the language not to get to the county clerk’s office in time.

“It’s on me,” said Edwards Township Supervisor Ron Taylor. “I didn’t get it to the county clerk in time. I missed the deadline.”

Taylor said the plan is to get the issue on the next available ballot that doesn’t require the township to pay for a special election, be it a school board or state election next year or the following.

“If I’m still in command at the next election we’ll get it on the ballot,” Taylor said. “I hope the voters understand. It was me who missed the deadline.”

He said there might be a silver lining to the oversight, however.

“They’ll get a slight break on their taxes until the next election,” Taylor said.

The millage was a renewal for “the purpose of improving, maintaining and constructing roads” in the township. If approved, it would have generated approximately $75,000 in its first year. The proposed millage would have lasted for 10 years.

Taylor said there weren’t any major road projects planned in the township that this error will set back.

“We don’t have anything planned,” he said. “We do still have money in the road millage. I’m not sure how much, but it’s not enough to do anything significant.”

The township is talking with the road commission about some work on Fournier Road, Taylor said, and may have to spend some money on that project. But that is the only thing on the horizon at this point.

There was debate at a township meeting in June about whether language for the proposed renewal needed to be reviewed by an attorney before being placed on the ballot. Despite contention from Trustee Brent Illig, the board voted to have its attorney review the language 4-1 at its June 11 meeting, with Illig voting no.

Illig said at the time that the township had not had past language reviewed, and he questioned whether the money should be spent.

According to Township Clerk Dennis Stephens, it cost around $350 to have the language drafted and reviewed by an attorney. He said unless the law changes, the current language should be able to be used in the future.

“The resolution is ready,” he said. “The language is done. We just have to get it to the county clerk in a timely manner. The taxpayers get a break until we can do that.”

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