Trenton road levy suffers defeat

Final unofficial numbers show the 3.9-mill road levy in Trenton failed by a vote of 67 to 33 percent Tuesday night.

The city of Trenton was the only jurisdiction in Butler County asking for new money this election, and Trenton Finance Director Mike Engel said the levy would cost $136 per $100,000 in home value had it passed.

RELATED: Trenton voters to decide road levy request for significant upgrades

Public Works Director Rob Leichman has said he hasn’t had money in his budget for repaving in four years and the streets need about $5 million worth of work, or $1 million per year.

“We have not had any funding to pave roads in the last four years, zero, zilch,” he said. “And it’s not a one for one, the deal with roads is you try to catch them before they fail. You want to catch them in a mediocre range if you will.”

The city originally considered asking for a 6-mill levy, but when the state approved the 10.5-cent-per-gallon gas tax hike, the estimated $264,000 cash infusion, allowed the city to reduce the levy to 4.5 mills. City council also has pledged an estimated $90,000 in municipal motor vehicle license fees for paving, so the levy ask was reduced again.

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