MOUNT GILEAD — While there were many township and village issues on the ballot Tuesday, a lot of interest was focused on the handful of countywide issues.
The county seniors and county roads issues were both renewed with a 66 percent approval. 4,501 voted for the senior levy and 2,312 voted against. The roads levy was almost identical with 4,507 voting for the levy and 2,312 voting against.
“I am so humbled and thankful the citizens of Morrow County passed the renewal levy last night,” County Engineer Bart Dennison said. “This will allow us to continue to improve and maintain the Morrow County roads to the standards that the citizens deserve.”
Seniors on Center Director Pam Eastep said, “We are so happy the renewal levy passed with 66 percent. We are glad that county voters appreciate the services that are so needed by seniors.”
The hospital levy approval was closer with 3,526 voting for the levy and 3,282 voting against.
“We are incredibly grateful for the continued support of the community. The passing of the levy will allow us to continue to offer a wide range of services for the community and to invest in our facility, our technology, and our people,” CJ Miller, Morrow County Hospital CEO, said.
“We know that many residents of our county depend on receiving quality care close to home. We plan to continue to provide that care now and into the future. We sincerely appreciate the confidence our patients and community members show us through the utilization of our services and through their support of the levy. “
The JVS Tri-Rivers renewal levy passed with 2,640 voting for the levy and 2,127 voting against with 55.38 percent approval. The levy also passed in Marion County with 57.31 percent approval.
The Mental Health levy and Whetstone Levy both failed to pass in Morrow County.
The Mental Health levy passed in Delaware County, 26,370 to 20,352, to ensure overall approval.
Morrow MRDD Director Nancy Foglesong said they knew passage of the DD replacement and increase levy would be difficult with six levies on the ballot.
“We knew it would be a challenge for voters,” Foglesong said. “We also knew we needed the funding with many families still on the waiting list for services.”
Foglesong said they will go back to the drawing board although they have done all the staffing cuts they can and will definitely need the funding in 2022-23. They will continue to look for suggestions, support and input from the community.
Township and village fire, sewer and cemetery levies all passed with the exception of First Cons Fire Replacement and Renewal levy.
Turnout was light for Morrow County voters as 5730 county residents came out to vote Tuesday, with an additional 761 who voted early and 440 mail-in votes cast.
That is 27.80 percent turnout of the 24,931 registered voters in Morrow County.
New voting system
A new voting system that produces both a paper ballot and electronic record went into place countywide this election.
The “Express Vote system” by Electronic Systems and Software received praise from poll workers, voters and the Board of Elections.
Mount Gilead East poll worker Connie Sharrock said the new voting system made voting a pleasant experience for voters.
“It was a good day. Things went pretty smoothly,” Sharrock said. “Voters were smiling and in a good mood.”
Board of Elections Chairman Terry Sautter was pleased with the performance of the new voting system.
“We got good reports from all the precincts.” Sautter said. “It was probably one of the smoothest elections we’ve ever had.”