Dayton says it is keeping Issue 9 repaving, park upgrade promises

Credit: Contributed

Credit: Contributed

Less than five years after Dayton voters approved an income tax hike, the city has repaved more than one-quarter of its residential street lane miles and upgraded more than one-third of its parks.

Revenue generated by the Issue 9 tax increase has helped the city repave a portion of 41% of the city’s 1,679 residential streets and improve 37% of its 41 parks, said Fred Stovall, Dayton’s director of public works.

“If you’ve been driving around the city lately, you should have seen some work that’s going on where we’ve been paving some streets,” Stovall said.

Issue 9 increased Dayton’s earnings tax to 2.5% from 2.25% through the end of 2024.

City officials promised while campaigning for Issue 9 that all residential streets would be in good shape by the time the tax hike expired.

Between 2017 and 2020, the city repaved 240 street lane miles of residential roadway (27% of the total), said Stovall.

The city is in the process of repaving 54 lane miles, and when completed this year the city will have repaved 32.5% of its total residential lane miles, he said.

Since 2017, the city has repaved residential streets in 63 of its 65 neighborhoods, and Issue 9 contributed about $3.4 million annually for the infrastructure work, Stovall said.

Repaving also was supported by about $32.1 million from other funding sources, he said.

The city also repaved 47 lane miles of thoroughfares (9.3% of the total) and 139 alleys (10% of the total).

Generally, the city uses state and federal funding to pay for thoroughfare improvements, said Dayton City Commissioner Matt Joseph.

Another Issue 9 campaign promise was to make significant park upgrades.

The city made an eight-year commitment to spend about $2 million enhancing its park system.

The city has spent about $1.36 million of its Issue 9 revenue on park improvements, Stovall said.

Dayton upgraded playground equipment in 13 of its 30 parks that have the amenities, Stovall said. Crews also resurfaced basketball courts and installed new rims in three parks, resurfaced two tennis courts and rebuilt one park shelter.

Fifteen of the city’s 41 parks have benefitted from Issue 9-funded upgrades, he said.

The city plans to install new playground equipment this summer at Ridgecrest and Nordale parks, Stovall said.

Issue 9 is expected to generate more than $14 million in income tax revenue this year, according to budget projections.

Issue 9 also pays for universal pre-kindergarten for 4-year-olds, enhanced mowing of vacant lots, increased police staffing and other activities.

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