Friday marked four days away from Michigan’s primary election.
There were some big items on the ballot, but one seemed to get far less attention than the others.
It’s the 911 millage proposal in Kalamazoo county.
The proposal was a long-term funding mechanism to support central 911 and public dispatch services.
“The goal is to come up with an equitable funding system so that all residents in Kalamazoo county paying the same across the board,” Jeff Troyer, the executive director for the Kalamazoo County Consolidated Dispatch Authority, said.
The reason this millage is important now, Troyer said is because the short-term funding that was approved back in 2017 was running out.
The August 4 proposal was a long-term funding plan that would finance the county’s emergency response system until 2029.
The proposal asked voters to approve a tax that cannot exceed zero point 65 mills, which basically meant a homeowner pays 65 cents per year on every $1,000 dollar of their home’s taxable value.
Troyer said based on the average $145,000 dollar median property value in the county, on average taxpayers would see an increase of about 47 dollars per year.
“Residents need to look at the tax assessment that they received from their local municipality and apply that millage for every one thousand dollars of taxable value,” Troyer said.
The millage was expected to raise over six million dollars in the first year. That money would continue to fund Kalamazoo County Consolidated Dispatch Authority for countywide 9-1-1 facilities, functions, and services.
If the millage failed Troyer said, it’s back to the drawing board.
“It will be up to the dispatch authority board of directors and I have no idea what they intend on doing if the proposal does not pass," Troyer said.
Polls opened on August 4 at 7:00 a.m.