The Canton parks levy has won the support of the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce. The levy is Issue 5 on the March 15 primary election ballot. State law requires that the 5-mill, five-year levy be labeled as an additional tax, but it is only a combination of two taxes that city property owners already pay. Their combination into one levy does not raise anyone’s property tax in the city.

The levy will continue the operations, the park improvements, and the recreational opportunities provided by the Canton Park Commission and the Canton Joint Recreation District. 

The Chamber in 2013 endorsed a first-ever 4-mill park levy that was designed to expire this year, at the same time the 1-mill recreation district levy expired. The goal three years ago was to combine both tax levies into one, which is what voters are being asked to do. Over the course of the last three years the Park Commission and the Joint Recreation District have been moving toward a merger. They now operate out of the same office at 1414 Market Ave. N for the convenience of city residents.

“The city’s parks and recreation program are economic development assets. They improve the quality of life. They help employers attract and retain prized workers. And as Hall of Fame Village develops, the parks will provide a green path between the village and downtown Canton. That is why the Chamber’s Board of Directors has gotten behind the levy in March,” said Dennis P. Saunier, president and CEO of the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce. 

The park levy also relieves the city of having to pay for park services from Canton’s general fund. The general fund pays for police and fire operations and many other city functions, and it has obligations that exceed revenue by about $5.1 million at the start of this year.

The Chamber urges City of Canton residents to VOTE YES on Issue 5 on March 15. Voters must be registered by February 16 to vote in the primary election; the State of Ohio Voter Registration Form can be accessed here. Interested individuals can stay up to date on Issue 5 news and events by following them on Facebook

For questions or comment on the Chamber's support of Issue 5, please contact David Kaminski, vice president of public policy and energy, at 330.458.2059.