By Keith Goble, Land Line state legislative editor
Election Day is two weeks away, and voters in southwestern Ohio communities soon will be making decisions on whether to fund road, bridge and streetcar initiatives.
Voters in Cincinnati will decide on a proposed streetcar system. Issue 48 on the local ballot is a proposed amendment to the city’s charter to prohibit City Hall from building a streetcar system through 2020.
As planned, the $100 million streetcar line would link downtown Cincinnati to the Over-the-Rhine historic district.
Critics say the vote to kill the streetcar plan in Hamilton County’s largest community not only would harm economic development, but could also block the city from any other rail development projects for the next decade.
Another Hamilton County community northwest of downtown Cincinnati will cast ballots on a transportation question. Green Township voters will decide whether to renew the current road levy set at 0.5 mills for another five years, which amounts to 5 cents per $100 of valuation.
The revenue from Issue 28 on the ballot would be used to pay for more road and bridge work in the township.
In neighboring Clermont County voters in two communities will decide on road levies.
Bethel Village voters will decide on Issue 15 for whether to renew the current levy set at 2 mills for another five years, which amounts to 20 cents per $100 of valuation.
New Richmond Village voters can cast ballots on continuing a 2.5 mill-rate, which amounts to 25 cents per $100 of valuation. On the ballot it is Issue 17.
About 20 miles southeast in Brown County, ballots in Lewis Township can be cast on a similar effort. Voters must decide whether to add 1.5 mills to the current street levy for five years. The extra money would be used for road construction and repair in the unincorporated areas of the township.
Voters in the Darke County and Miami County locale of Bradford Village will decide whether to renew the current street levy of 7 mills for five more years, which amounts to 70 cents per $100 valuation. The levy pays for street construction, repair and maintenance. It is Issue 19 on the local ballot.
Three townships in nearby Champaign County also are set to vote on road funding. Concord Township voters will decide on extending a quarter mill rate for three years. Salem Township voters can cast ballots on adding a 29-cent mill rate for three years while Rush Township voters can choose to renew a 15-cent mill rate for the same time period.
Additional questions about funding road work are also on ballots in nearby Clark, Greene and Montgomery counties.
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