CANTON, OH (May 1, 2013) – The Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce has endorsed Issue 1, the Stark County Board of Developmental Disabilities combined levy on the May 7 ballot. Before its unanimous vote to endorse the levy, the Chamber’s Board of Directors heard Developmental Disabilities Superintendent William Green explain that the 3.3-mill request is the combination of two existing levies, one of 1.9 mills that expires this year and another of 1.4 that expires in 2014. Because the Developmental Disabilities Board is seeking an early renewal of the latter levy, it is listed as an additional tax on the ballot. However, the Developmental Disabilities Board will cancel the 1.4-mill levy and not collect it if the May 7 measure passes. This means the 3.3-mill levy on the ballot will not raise taxes for Stark County residents, only renew existing taxes. Green also told the Chamber that the Developmental Disabilities Board has a long-range plan to make their services more cost efficient, and to purchase more services from private businesses, to live with expected reductions in funding over the next several years. One goal of the Developmental Disabilities Board is to prepare citizens with developmental disabilities to function well and contribute to the community. Hundreds of developmentally disabled citizens work for private businesses because of the care, education and training they have received from the programs of the Developmental Disabilities Board. “When the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce considers endorsement of tax levy, it looks first for a reason based in community or economic development. The contributions in workforce development and the benefits to the local employers that are made by developmentally disabled workers is that economic development reason for supporting this levy,” said Dennis P. Saunier, president and CEO of the Canton Regional Chamber. “In addition, we appreciate the efforts of the Developmental Disabilities Board to find ways to live within its means and keep providing essential services to the people who need those services,” Saunier said.