VAN WERT – For the second time, the .28 percent Van Wert City Income Tax Increase has failed.

This time 1,143 citizens or 54.93 percent voted against the tax while 938 (45.07 percent) voted for it. Van Wert Mayor Jerry Mazur noted that the results weren’t what he had hoped to see, and explained that effective Jan. 1 the City will be looking at where they can make cuts until the income tax is placed on the ballot for a third time.

“Jan. 1 we are going to have to make some cuts,” said Mazur. “We will put this on the ballot the next opportunity but we are going to have to set something in place right now to make sure we are okay in 2019.”

Mazur said that many people may be unaware of what will happen now that the income tax increase has failed. Mazur stated that starting in 2018 people will have to pay to have their own brush and leaves taken away, citing that it costs $75 to take brush to trash haulers.

“We just can’t do those things,” said Mazur. “This is just a reality.”

Mazur also stated that a hiring freeze on City jobs would start Jan. 1, meaning that if a City employee, whether it be a firefighter, police officer, or other, quits or retires, they will not be replaced.

“It’s a business thing,” said Mazur. “If you don’t have the money, you can’t spend it. We’ve reached that point.”

Mazur explained that the tax increase will be on the ballot again in May.

“When people see the impact of this, and they realize that we’re serious about it, maybe then they will come out and vote,” he said.

Mazur noted that the City receives over 200 assist calls a year. The City frequently receives such assist calls where a senior has fallen and needs help getting back up. The City does not charge for those calls. Going forward, Mazur noted the City will not be able to afford to do those calls.

“The seniors are going to suffer most with this,” continued Mazur. “Often we’re called out for just assist calls. Effective immediately we’re going to cut those services. So therefor, people should start to think about calling Spirit or some other provider to come do the assist calls.”

Two other local issues were on Tuesday’s ballot.

The Vantage Renewal Levey saw a great deal of support in Van Wert with 3,747 (75.07 percent) voting for the levy while 1,243 (24.93 percent) voted against it.

The Tri Count Alcohol, Drug Addiction, Mental Health Service Board Renewal Levy also saw support in Van Wert with 4,137 (69.95 percent) voting for the levy and 1,777 (30.05 percent) voting against it.

Van Wert will see a new City Council member. Former City Council member and Democrat Jeff Agler took the First Ward Councilman position with 120 votes (53.57 percent) versus Fred Fishers 104 (46.43 percent) votes.

Local schools has positions open for their school boards.

Scott Mull ran unopposed and will fill a position on the Van Wert City Schools Board of Education.

Lincolnview Local Schools had three open seats for the district’s Board of Education with five people running for the position. Mark Zielke received 495 votes (21.55 percent) to win him a seat while Lori Snyder (486 votes/ 2.16 percent) and Eric Germann (482 votes/ 20.98 percent) were reelected to the school board position.

The Crestview Local School District also had three open seats for the district’s Board of Education with five people running. New comers Nan Grace (667 votes/ 24.49 percent) and Jacob Sawmiller (601 votes/ 22.06 percent) were elected to fill positions, while Lori Bittner received 589 (21.62 percent) to be reelected to the Board of Education.

Other contested results include:

Convoy village council with three positions open going to James Hyitt (152 votes/23.97 percent), Neal Orsbon (145 votes/ 22.87 percent), and Patti Cramer (131 votes/ 20.66 percent).

Ohio City village council with four open seats going to Larry Krugh (93 votes/ 23.43 percent), Glory Agler (92 votes/ 23.17 percent), Michael Edwards (72 votes/ 18.14 percent) and Jerry Ruwoldt (72 votes/ 18.14 percent).

In Harrison Township four people were seeking two Board of Trustees seats. Dustin Figley received 198 votes (36.60 percent) and Dennis Hoover received 134 (24.77 percent) to fill the seats.

In Jackson township three people were vying for two positions on the Board of Trustees. Scott Deitering received 69 votes (36.13 percent) and Winfred Douglas Teman received 66 votes (34.55 percent) to fill the seats.

Four people were looking to fill two Jennings Township Board of Trustee seats. Keith Savidge received 107 votes (31.66 percent) and Michael Hiett received 96 (28.40 percent) to fill the seats.

In Pleasant Township, three people were seeking two trustee positions. Todd J. Wallace received 1,444 votes (39.58 percent) and Tim Mengerink received 1,297 votes (35.55 percent) to fill the positions.

Three people were seeking two open trustee seats in Tully Township. Tom Gibson received 318 votes (38.97 percent) and Craig Feasby received 254 votes (31.13 percent).

Official results were not available at time of print for Statewide Issues. However, Issue 1 Rights for Crime Victims passed in Van Wert with 4,836 votes (81.77 percent) voting “YES” and looked to see similar results across the State. Issue 2 regarding prescription drug costs failed in Van Wert with 4,947 voters (83.34 percent) voting “NO” and also looked to fail statewide.