Senior citizens levy narrowly turned down

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The only countywide issue on the ballot was put down by just 79 votes on Tuesday night.

The $1 million Senior Citizens levy was proposed to provide food, transportation to medical facilities, and other social and educational opportunities to local seniors.

“We are saddened that the levy did not pass because we know that there are many elderly out there who have many needs,” said Marilyn Howard, President of the Lawrence County AARP chapter.

Email newsletter signup

Supporters said many of Lawrence County’s 12,000 seniors could benefit from the levy if it had passed.

The expanded program would have based assistance to the elderly on need rather than income limitations.

Fifty-seven counties in Ohio already have similar levies.

Although upset by the outcome, Howard is still hopeful.

“It was very close, and we just wish that it would have been different,” she said. “But if the people really want it, we’ll get together and make it happen next time.”

Only 27 percent of the county’s residents are home owners, who would be affected by the tax.

The average home owner in the county would have paid less than $27 more a year for the levy.

Howard said next year, they will approach the issue differently.

“This is our first time meeting this challenge and needless to say… we were not that familiar with it,” she said. “But we will change our plan a little bit and hopefully we’ll see it pass the next time around.”