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Tax hikes rejected

August 13, 2014 - Read our lips – no new taxes.

For the most part, that was the message from Oxford and Addison voters in the Aug. 5 primary election. Voters in both townships rejected a number of requests for new or increased property taxes.

"(They) thought they were pretty slick putting these proposals on the primary ballot when (that has) the lowest voter-turnout of all the elections," wrote Oxford resident Gloria Smith on the Leader's Facebook page. "Get all your supporters out there to vote for your proposal and you're in like (Flynn) – NOT."

The $20 million bond proposal to build a community recreation center in Oxford's Stony Lake Township Park was thumped hard at the ballot box.

It went down 2,432 to 1,544.

The proposed five-year, 0.05-mill operating tax for the center was also turned down by a wide margin. It failed 2,417 to 1,531.

This is the second time Oxford voters have failed a community center proposal.

The last time was back in 1998 when it went down 1,384 to 997.

Joining the community center in defeat was the Oxford Public Library. Its request for a 10-year, 0.4518-mill tax increase to help offset revenue losses and maintain services was rejected 2,213 to 1,743.

The Leader learned Tuesday afternoon that the Oxford library filed with the county that morning to place the same millage request on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Both community center proposals and the library tax hike only passed in one of Oxford's seven voter precincts and that was Precinct 7, which contains the entire Waterstone development.

A request to increase the Addison Twp. Public Library's revenue stream via the addition of a new 0.25-mill tax for 10 years failed. It went down 585 to 517.

"I was disappointed, of course," said Addison Library Director Jaema Berman. "But this was our first time asking for a new, additional millage. It says to me that we have a little bit more work to do to get our message out to the public. I know people do value our library."

The Addison library will return with another millage request on the Nov. 4 ballot (see story on Page 8).

Requests to renew police and fire millages in Addison were overwhelmingly approved. The police tax passed 806-312, while the fire tax was approved 873-250.

State Rep. Brad Jacobsen, of Oxford, won his Republican primary race against challenger John Reilly, of Oakland Twp.

Jacobsen beat him 5,552 to 4,367.

There was no record-breaking voter-turnout in either Oxford or Addison townships. In Oxford, of the 14,368 registered voters, a total of 3,778 (or 26.29 percent) participated in the primary election.

Over in Addison, a total of 1,145 (or 23.03 percent) of the township's 4,971 registered voters cast a ballot.

CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.
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