BUCYRUS — Crawford County voters on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved a sales tax to operate the Crawford County Justice Center. The jail issued passed by an unofficial tally of 2,271-949, meaning more than 70 percent of voters approved a 0.5 percent sales tax in support of the jail.
Specifically, voters gave their approval to “a sales and use tax in the amount of 0.5 percent for the purpose of supporting criminal and administrative justice services specifically the administration and maintenance of the Crawford County Justice Center (jail) for a continuing period of time.”
When the proposal to build the Crawford County Justice Center, which includes the jail and the sheriff’s office at 3613 Stetzer Road in Bucyrus, 25 years ago, voters approved a sales to pay for the construction and operation of the jail. That levy will run its course at the end of June.
The new sales tax goes into effect July 1.
The Crawford County Justice Center opened in 1998. Crawford County Sheriff Scott Kent said it costs about $2.6 million annually to operate the jail, which has a capacity to hold 120 inmates.
This is the second time Crawford County voters have been asked to approve the sales tax. In November, it failed by more than 3,300 votes, 8,781-5,413.
For Tuesday’s primary election, less than 12 percent of the 27,781 register voters in Crawford County cast votes for or against the sales tax. There were 28,582 registered voters in Crawford County last November, and on that day almost 51 percent of voters went to the polls.
Also, Bucyrus voters approved — 1,274-431 — a six-year, .05 percent levy to be exclusively used for construction, general improvement and continued maintenance, repair and upkeep of public streets, thoroughfares and alleys, curbs, gutters, catch basins and wheelchair ramps within the City of Bucyrus, and for the purchase of such street equipment and machinery.
In the Republican party race for mayor, incumbent Jeffrey Reser easily won, collecting 713 votes, vs 434 for Jenny Vermillion, 163 for Louis Katona III and 103 for Mike Allonas.
The two Republican candidates for president of Bucyrus City Councl are in a virtual dead-heat and are awaiting the results of the official count, that includes provisional ballots. Currently, Kurt Fankhauser leads Terry L. Spiegel by just six votes, 701-694.
Also, in the Republican Primary race for Council at Large, Mark Makeever bested Kevin Myers 875-753.
All other races were uncontested.