New levy proposed for London fire, EMS, and police

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(Posted July 13, 2022)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

London city council is considering a new levy request to be placed on the Nov. 8 general election ballot.

The request calls for a 0.4 percent income tax increase for a continuing period of time with collection starting Jan. 1, 2023. Of that amount, 0.25 percent would go toward additional funding for the city’s fire and EMS department. The other 0.15 percent would go toward the construction of a new police station. If passed, the increase would bring the city’s income tax to 1.9 percent.

On July 7, council held a first reading on the legislation required to place the levy on the ballot. Three readings are required before a vote is taken. The deadline to file issues with the Board of Elections for the Nov. 8 ballot is Aug. 10.

The city’s previous levy request, which appeared on the May 3 primary ballot, called for a 0.5 percent income tax increase for additional fire/EMS funding, construction of a police station, and construction of a community center. The request failed 506-1,054.

The community center is not included in the new request proposed for the November ballot.

“Right now, we just want to focus on the safety services and then come up with another plan for the community center,” said Mayor Patrick Closser.

Henry Comer, council president, said the new proposal “makes more sense” than the one that appeared on the May ballot.

Regarding the need for a new police station, he commented, “I don’t think that it can be neglected any longer.”

Council members Greg Eades and Rich Hays also voiced support for the new levy proposal. Council member Anthony Smith said support for the city’s fire/EMS and police services is important as the city grows.

“It’s great that London’s continuing to grow. Those are definitely the services that I want to make sure are done right,” he said.

The levy legislation will be up for a second reading at council’s July 21 meeting.

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