Summit County’s Ballot Initiative 1A passes, creating $88 million in revenue over 10 years

An article published by the Summit Daily discusses the recent election results and their impact on early childhood. Full text below:

Summit County ballot initiative 1A passed, tacking a mill levy on Summit County property owners that will raise $8.8 million per year for the next ten years for early childhood care, behavioral health programs, fire mitigation, recycling and public infrastructure.

Though the initiative was attacked for bundling five disparate issues on to one ballot question, it still won handily with nearly 60 percent of the vote with 11,251 votes counted as of publication.

Tamara Drangstveit, executive director of the Family and Intercultural Resource Center and a leader of the Yes on 1A campaign, said she was proud of Summit County for “doing the right thing.”

“We are so grateful to Summit County voters for doing the right thing here,” Drangstveit said. “We’ve said all along it’s not easy for Summit County’s working families to raise their families here, and this initiative will go a long way to helping them.”

Drangstveit said Summit families with four year olds are going to see “real financial relief” in their budgets, and there is now real progress towards building an early childcare center for working families to turn to.

As far as behavioral health, Drangstveit cited Summit’s high suicide rate in why the funding toward Building Hope and associated behavioral health programs is so important.

Jen Schenk, another leader of the Yes on 1A initiative, said she was also pleased that Summit voters approved a path to sustainability.

“I’m super excited,” Schenk said. “Recycling is really poor in Summit County, so this is a huge step to getting recycling up to the levels it needs to be, and so we can provide more recycling services to the citizens of Summit County.”

County commissioner Karn Stiegelmeier was also happy with 1A passing, as it gives the county funding it desperately needs to address the critical areas.

“We are really appreciative that Summit County voters  recognize these essential needs, as they help make Summit County the awesome place it is,” Stiegelmeier said.