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Oakland County millage increase will help with upkeep of parks

Posted at 4:33 AM, Oct 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-12 09:34:28-04

OAKLAND COUNTY, Mich. (WXYZ) — Oakland County is turning to a millage increase to help with park upkeep.

The issue will be on the November ballot, asking residents if they're willing to pay about $1 extra per month.

The county's parks and recreation department says if the increase passes, they would raise about $22 million in the first year alone. Without it, layoffs may be the next option.

Executive Officer Dan Stencil says it's the first increase of its kind since the parks system was founded in 1966.

“In the last five to 10 years, we’ve had to close some of our facilities, largely water slides," he said. “We’ve had to cut back on some of our staff.”

In addition to aging infrastructure, Stencil says the need for more revenue is also due, in part, to expanded services and deferred maintenance. He says deeper cuts are inevitable without new revenue.

“We will have to close the facilities," he said. "We may have to lay off staff.”