Senior fitness center planned in Reynoldsburg

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Staff Writer

Reynoldsburg’s senior citizens could soon have a new place to exercise.

During a special hearing on May 20, Reynoldsburg City Council voted to send a measure to the planning commission that would rezone three parcels of property owned by the Wesley Ridge Retirement Community and allow for the construction of a wellness center dedicated to seniors.

The facility is slated to include a natatorium for senior-focused activities and aquatic therapies; a health bar and lounge; wellness classrooms; and a gym.

Plans are in the preliminary stages, but according to documents filed with the city, the facility would only be open to members of the retirement community. But in two months the company expects it to be open to the senior community at-large in the city.

The project could also include further expansion of senior housing in the future.
A representative of the adjacent Taylor Park Shopping Center expressed concerns about the project, including the need for a privacy fence and a new drainage system, a lack of parking and additional traffic on Taylor Road.

Representatives of both entities said they would try to work out their differences throughout the rezoning process, which will next go to a 30-day waiting period for the planning commission. Afterward, the planning commission will likely send the measure back to the service committee for further consideration.

City finances

Council’s finance committee got its first crack at a budget for 2016 at its May 18 meeting.
The budget projects a total of $14.9 million in the city’s coffers. However, expenditures are expected to exceed that amount by $45,832.

The bulk of the city’s revenue – $11.6 million – is expected to be generated through income taxes.

The city is anticipated to enter the year with $2.5 million in reserve funds.

The city’s revenue totaled $14.6 million this year, with expected expenditures of $14.5 million.

City officials have repeatedly said Reynoldsburg’s income tax rate of 0.5 percent is inadequate to keep up with its needs. Reynoldsburg is the only city bordering Columbus that has an income tax rate of less than 1 percent.

Officials have explored the possibility of increasing the city’s income tax, which would require voter approval, and unilaterally eliminating the income tax credit for those who live but work outside of the city.

Reynoldsburg voters have rejected four income tax increase proposals in a row.

Council will likely revise the spending outline before its required passage on July 20.

Tomato Festival update

Open containers could once again be allowed in Huber Park during the city’s annual Tomato Festival.

The community development committee voted to send a measure to council that would allow for alcohol consumption at Huber Park during the 50th annual Tomato Festival.

It would mark the third consecutive year the city allowed for alcohol consumption at the event, which is scheduled for Aug. 14-15.

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