Cincinnati Park Levy Defeated, Now What?

Nov 4, 2015

Burnett Woods
Credit Keith Lanser / Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

Now that Cincinnati voters have rejected a property tax levy to fund city parks, the question becomes how to pay for maintenance and upgrades?  

Council Member Charlie Winburn, who opposed the tax increase, offered what he called "an olive branch."

“Since the park levy did fail... we (should) work together as a team, rally behind the mayor, and we rally together as a Council,” Winburn said.  “And come up with a comprehensive plan to help our parks, I think we can still do that.”

Other council members who opposed the tax levy said the park system can be funded without additional revenue from taxpayers, but they have offered no specifics.

Council Member Christopher Smitherman, who supported the issue, said he is looking to the other side for answers.

“I think that those who opposed the parks deal, I am looking for them to introduce the plan, the capital, the operating of how we’re going to handle our parks,” Smitherman said.  “Outside of the absence of that, in my opinion, it is incredibly irresponsible.”

Park officials have said there is $55 million worth of deferred maintenance at city park facilities.