Proposed levy would stop double-taxing of Swanton residents

By David J. Coehrs -

Fulton Township will ask voters Tuesday to approve a new fire levy. The proposed five-year, 1-mill fire levy is on Tuesday’s ballot so that Village of Swanton residents will no longer pay overlapping taxes for fire services to both the village and the township.

Scheduled to generate approximately $94,280 annually, the new levy is the culmination of an agreement between the township and the Village of Swanton. It would collect approximately $35,020 within the village limits and $59,260 in Fulton Township outside the city limits.

Should the levy pass, Swanton has offered a verbal agreement to rescind the collection of taxes for fire service from Fulton Township residents inside the village, according to Julie Szabo, Fulton Township fiscal officer. Those residents would pay only for the township levy.

“The village is committed to examining the financial burden of our taxpayers to see if there are ways to alleviate some of that,” Swanton Administrator Rosanna Hoelzle said. She said the plan came together during a meeting in July of 2020 involving officials from Swanton and Fulton and Swancreek townships. Swancreek Township ultimately decided to not propose a new fire levy.

The Swanton Fire Department responds to calls in both Fulton and Swancreek townships.

“It gets the same price for everybody across the board,” Fulton Township Trustee Joe Gombash said of the proposed levy. “Right now, the people of the village are actually double-taxed.”

The levy terms between the township and village has been an argument for years, and it is finally being resolved, Gombash said. “It’s just making it more fair for everybody,” he said.

Fulton Township already has two active fire levies collectively generating approximately $163,705 annually.

By David J. Coehrs

Reach David J. Coehrs at 419-335-2010.

Reach David J. Coehrs at 419-335-2010.