May 3, 2019

How $5 vehicle registration fee and gas tax increase will impact county roads, bridges

BATAVIA, Ohio (May 3, 2019) — Commissioners approved at their May 1 Session a request from County Engineer Pat Manger to advertise for bids to resurface approximately 19 miles of roads and repair 17 miles of roads at an estimated cost of $2.08 million.

Approximately half of the revenue for the 2019 Road Resurfacing Program is coming from a $5 increase in vehicle registration fees, which the Commissioners approved in 2018. This allows roughly $1 million more per year to flow into the Engineer’s Road Improvement Program, increasing the number of miles that will be repaved each year.

Also during the May 1 Session, Manger spoke to the Commissioners about the recently enacted $10.5 cents-a -gallon increase in Ohio’s gasoline tax. It is the first increase in the gas tax since 2005. Neither increase was indexed for inflation, and Manger said that has put every county behind in its attempts to keep up with road and bridge needs. The gas tax increase is expected to generate an additional $1.5 million a year for each of Ohio’s counties.

Townships, villages and cities will also see additional revenue from the gas tax increase.

The Engineer’s Office is responsible for approximately 400 miles of county roads and 416 bridges in Clermont County. Funding comes exclusively from Ohio’s gasoline tax, which is divided equally among all 88 counties, no matter the population, and annual vehicle registration fees. Each county receives approximately 70% of the vehicle registration fees generated in their county.

In 2018, the county Engineer’s Office received $7.2 million  vehicle registration fees and $2.3 million in fuel tax revenues.

In 2020, the first full year that increased revenues will come from the fuel tax increase, the Engineer’s Office is expected to receive $8.2 million in vehicle registration fees and $3.8 million in fuel tax revenues.

The additional revenue from the vehicle registration fee will be used exclusively for road resurfacing, reducing the paving cycle from the current 38 years to 22 years. The additional gas tax revenue will address deficient bridges, Manger said.

He noted that Clermont County’s topography makes it susceptible to landslides, and that currently 13 county roads are affected by landslides.

The Engineer’s Office said resurfacing on 2019 projects is expected to begin in late June.

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February 6, 2019

Clermont County courts, other offices to close Friday for detective’s services

Detective Bill Brewer

BATAVIA, Ohio (Feb. 6, 2019) – All Clermont County courts and many county offices will be closed Friday, Feb. 8, to allow employees to attend, view or participate in services for Sheriff’s Detective Bill Brewer, who lost his life in the line of duty on Feb. 2.

CLOSED

Sheriff’s Office: Administrative offices close at noon Thursday and all day Friday.

Common Pleas Court: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday. This also includes Probation, Law Library, and Court Services.

Juvenile Court/Probate Court: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday.

Prosecutor’s Office: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday.

Domestic Relations Court: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday. All hearings will be scheduled to the next available time.

Board of County Commissioners’ office, and departments including Water Resources Administration Building, Building Inspection, Permit Central, Job & Family Services, OhioMeansJobs/Clermont County, and Department of Community & Economic Development: Closed Friday.

Municipal Court: Closed Friday. Those who have an arraignment scheduled for Friday will be sent a new court date. They can also check the Clermontclerk.org website for updated information.

Common Pleas Clerk’s Office, Domestic Relations Clerk and all auto title offices: Closed Friday.

Public Defender’s Office: Closed Friday.

Auditor’s Office: Closed Friday.

Recorder’s Office: Closed Friday.

Engineer’s Office: Closed Friday.

Public Health: Closed Friday.

Coroner’s Office: Closed Friday; on call at 513.543.0129.

OPEN

Some county offices will be open, including the Treasurer’s Office, which is accepting payments for first-half property taxes, which are due Feb. 13. The Municipal Clerk of Court Office will be open Friday. The Board of Elections office will be open Friday.

Bus service in Clermont County, including Dial-A-Ride, will operate normally.

The county website, www.clermontcountyohio.gov, has separate pages for each county office, including how to contact them. Check there if you have questions on whether an office is open or closed.

Services for Detective Brewer are as follows:

Family and friends are invited to a public visitation from 4-8 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 7, at Mount Carmel Christian Church, 4110 Bach Buxton Rd, Batavia, OH 45103, under the direction of E.C. Nurre Funeral Home in Amelia. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at the church. Interment will follow at Pierce Township Cemetery.

May 25, 2018

Commissioners approve $5 increase to annual vehicle registration fee

BATAVIA, Ohio (May 25, 2018) – Commissioners on May 23 approved a $5 increase to the annual motor vehicle registration fee for Clermont County residents. It will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2019, and will fund the county’s Road Improvement Program.

County Engineer Patrick Manger initially requested the increase when he came before Commissioners on March 12. At that time, he presented information about the need for the additional revenue – approximately $1 million – the fee would raise in the county.

In Ohio, county engineers’ offices are funded through the Ohio gas tax (28 cents per gallon distributed equally among 88 counties), and vehicle registration fees. In 2017, the Clermont office received $7.2 million in registration fees and $2.3 million in gas tax revenues. That revenue funds the repairing and repaving of county-maintained roads.

Manger noted that revenue from those two sources has remained essentially flat since 2007. Yet the cost of asphalt has doubled in that time, Manger said, from $57.75 per cubic yard to $132 per cubic yard. He also noted that at current revenue levels, the average paving cycle for each county road is 38 years, while the industry standard is 10-12 years. The additional revenue would help close the gap, he said.

Three public meetings were held in May – in Miami Township, the Village of Batavia, and the Village of New Richmond — to share information on the proposed increase, and to hear from residents both in favor and against it.

Under the resolution approved on Wednesday at Session, revenue from the $5 increase will be tracked separately from other revenue sources in the Engineer’s Office, and all of it will go into the county’s Road Improvement Program for road resurfacing. Manger said at Session that over the last five years, the county has averaged $1 million to $1.2 million in revenue for resurfacing. The additional revenue of $1 million will essentially double that.

Commissioner David Uible said that a longer-term fix to road issues rested with the State Legislature, and that with more hybrid and electric vehicles on the road, another revenue source besides the gasoline tax and vehicle registration fees should be found.

Commissioner David Painter said that in his travels around the county the first, second and third priorities he hears from concerned residents are “fix the roads, fix the roads, fix the roads. The additional $5 will be used to address this concern,” he said.

“Keeping our roads in good condition, and resurfaced on a regular basis, is important to our residents and our employers,” said Commissioner Ed Humphrey, President of the Board of Commissioners. “This increase will allow the County Engineer to repair roads more quickly, and make them safer for every driver.”

Under the State Transportation Bill (House Bill 26), which took effect on June 30, 2017, counties are permitted to place an additional $5 license fee on vehicle registration fees. Commissioners must authorize the additional fee. Hamilton County has also approved such an increase. Warren County is holding public hearings in June on a proposed $5 increase to its motor vehicle registration fee.

The last license plate tax increase prior to this one was in 2005 to repair and refurbish bridges in Clermont County.

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April 16, 2018

Public hearings set for May 9, 15 on proposed $5 local vehicle license fee

BATAVIA, Ohio (April 16, 2018) —  Public hearings will be held May 9 and May 15 to gather public opinion about a proposed $5 local motor vehicle license tax that would be added to the annual vehicle registration fee in Clermont County.

The May 9 hearing will be held at 7 p.m. at Miami Township Civic Center, and the May 15 hearing will be held at 7 p.m. at the Village of Batavia’s new village hall, the Armory building.

County Engineer Pat Manger

Under the State Transportation Bill (House Bill 26), which took effect on June 30, 2017, counties, as well as cities and townships, are permitted to place an additional $5 license fee on vehicle registration fees. Commissioners must authorize the additional fee.

The revenues raised by this increased fee would be used by the Office of the County Engineer to repair and repave county roads and bridges.

In Ohio, county engineers’ offices are funded through the Ohio gas tax (28 cents per gallon distributed equally among 88 counties), and vehicle registration fees. In 2017, the Clermont office received $7.2 million in registration fees and $2.3 million in gas tax revenues. That revenue funds the repairing and repaving of county-maintained roads and bridges.

County Engineer Pat Manger, in a presentation to Commissioners on March 12, noted that revenue from those two sources has remained essentially flat since 2007. Yet the cost of asphalt has doubled in that time, Manger said, from $57.75 per cubic yard to $132 per cubic yard.

The additional $5 fee would generate approximately $1 million annually, Manger said. All additional revenue would be used to fund the county Road & Bridge Improvement Program.

He also noted that at current revenue levels, the average paving cycle for each county road is 38 years, while the industry standard is 10-12 years. The additional revenue would help close the gap, he said.

“We have a significant challenge to address in fixing our local roads,” Manger told Commissioners. “Expenses continue to increase and we do not have the resources to ensure the level of maintenance our residents expect. This is just one step in the right direction. An increase is absolutely necessary.”

If Commissioners approve the fee, it would go into effect on Jan. 1, 2019.

Hearings:

7 p.m. May 9, Miami Township Civic Center, 6101 Meijer Drive, Milford

7 p.m. May 15, Batavia Armory Town Hall, 65 N. Second St., Batavia

Ohio BMV FAQ on tax increase:

http://www.bmv.ohio.gov/links/bmv_Permissive_Tax_FAQs.pdf

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January 24, 2018

ODOT awards $5M for SR 32 improvements

map indicating the areas of improvements

BATAVIA, Ohio (Jan. 24, 2018) – The Clermont County Transportation Improvement District (CCTID) today announced that the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) will invest an additional $5 million in Clermont County to support ongoing infrastructure improvements along the State Route (SR) 32 corridor. The award is part of the highly competitive Transportation Review Advisory Committee process, which will allocate $55 million for statewide infrastructure improvements during this funding cycle.

“Together with the Ohio Department of Transportation and our local transportation partners, we have invested more than $162 million in Clermont County to improve travel for those who use the SR 32 corridor,” said Pat Manger, Clermont County Engineer and Board Member of the CCTID. “We are pleased that ODOT has extended its commitment to improving safety, easing congestion and supporting job creation by continuing its investment in our area.”

Manger said the $5 million award would be used to fund property acquisition costs related to the construction of an interchange to replace the intersection of SR 32 with Bach-Buxton Road and Elick Lane, which is part of the Eastern Corridor Program of projects. These improvements, which include an additional travel lane on SR 32 in each direction, will allow traffic to move from I-275 to Batavia on SR 32 without a traffic signal.

Infrastructure investments support the local and statewide economy as well as the creation of new jobs

The funding will also help open up economic development opportunities in Clermont County and east along the SR 32 corridor. “We believe ODOT recognized the importance of funding this project work because of the strong connection SR 32 has to supporting increased investment throughout the entire southern region of the state,” said Clermont County Commissioner and Board President Ed Humphrey.

SR 32 is one of the highest-volume local routes in Ohio and is a critical east-west connection for the movement of people, goods and services throughout the state. Current projections show that traffic volumes on SR 32 are approaching interstate levels and that by the year 2030, SR 32 is expected to carry 79,000 vehicles per day, not much less than I-275’s estimated 84,000 vehicles a day.

Investments along the corridor have already resulted in tangible development opportunities with the completion of access improvements to the South Afton Commerce Park in 2017. South Afton Commerce Park is a business-ready site for manufacturers.

“Business-ready sites are considered highly attractive to potential companies because they reduce the time it takes for companies to locate and start operations in a given location,” said Humphrey. “More than 1,850 jobs are expected to be created directly at the South Afton site, with an additional 1,675 new jobs with suppliers and other supporting services. The development is expected to lead to $1.5 billion in local economic activity per year once completed,” he added.

 Progress continues; multiple upcoming projects are fully-funded and slated for construction

Later this year, the Transportation Improvement District will begin making improvements on SR 32 at Bells Lane; and ODOT will complete work to add a second lane from the southbound I-275 exit to SR 32 and construct an additional travel lane on eastbound SR 32 from GlenEste-Withamsville Road to Olive Branch-Stonelick Road. In 2019, the Clepper Lane Extension will be built, Old SR 74 will be widened from Schoolhouse Road to GlenEste-Withamsville Road, and access improvements at Old SR 74, Tealtown Road and Paul Drive will be made.

 Engineer Manger said that the Transportation Improvement District has a record of success, noting that the organization has completed more than 60 projects in Clermont County since its creation in 2006. “Our goal is to bring together multiple groups, develop one agenda and speak with one voice to local, regional, state and federal decision-makers so that numerous projects can be completed in a coordinated fashion, and the resources of those agencies can be leveraged to generate funding for projects that might not otherwise have been completed. This award from ODOT will allow us to continue that progress.”

 About the Clermont County Transportation Improvement District

The Clermont County Transportation Improvement District (CCTID) works across geographic and political lines to improve the quality of life for Clermont County residents by stimulating economic development through regional transportation improvements. The five-member board is made up of representatives from the Clermont County Engineer’s Office, Clermont County, Miami and Union Townships, and the private sector.

 The CCTID is currently working on nearly two dozen roadway improvements that will increase safety, support better traffic flow through the area, and provide the infrastructure for continued economic development throughout the county. More information about the CCTID and their project work can be found on-line at GoClermont.org.

About the Eastern Corridor Program

The Eastern Corridor is a program of integrated, multi-modal transportation investments. The Program will enhance our regional transportation network by improving travel and connections between central Cincinnati and the communities extending east through Hamilton County into western Clermont County. Program elements include improvements to existing road networks, new and expanded roadways, rail transit, expanded bus routes and improvements for pedestrians and bicyclists. The Eastern Corridor Program is administered by the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) in cooperation with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the Eastern Corridor Implementation Partners.

 The Eastern Corridor Implementation Partners include the Hamilton County Transportation Improvement District, the Clermont County Transportation Improvement District, the City of Cincinnati, the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Regional Council of Governments, the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority and the Ohio Department of Transportation.

To learn more, go to: EasternCorridor.org.

 

November 8, 2017

Commissioners OK Aicholtz Road name changes

BATAVIA, Ohio (Nov. 8, 2017) – County Commissioners approved today (Nov. 8)  the renaming of several stretches of Aicholtz Road in Union Township. The Commissioners accepted the recommendation of County Engineer Pat Manger, who proposed the renaming following the completion of the Aicholtz Road Connector earlier this fall.

These are the changes:

Current addresses 550-583 on Old State Route 74 becomes Aicholtz Road, affecting 10 properties.

Current addresses 616-645 on Rust Lane becomes Aicholtz Road, affecting 11 properties.

Current addresses 4527-4533 on Aicholtz Road becomes Summerside Road, affecting five properties.

Current addresses 4503-4511 on Aicholtz Road becomes Flurin Lane, affecting four properties.

The changes go into effect immediately. The Engineer’s Office will install new street signs as early as next week.

The Aicholtz Road Connector, which took two years to complete and cost $6.25 million, reopened a portion of Aicholtz Road that was severed when Interstate 275 was originally built. The project now allows for direct access to Eastgate. The name changes made sense given the reconfiguring of the roads, Manger told Commissioners at a public hearing on Oct. 25.

Union Township trustees voted to support the proposed changes on Sept.  14.

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Posted in: BCC, County Engineer
November 9, 2016

Part of Old SR 74 to be closed for road project

BATAVIA (Nov. 7, 2016) — The Clermont County Engineer’s Office has announced that work to improve the safety and flow of traffic on a portion of Old SR 74 between Olive Branch-Stonelick Road and Armstrong Boulevard will begin later this month. The first phase of this construction project will require a road closure on Old SR 74 between Olive Branch-Stonelick Road and Amelia-Olive Branch Road to widen the bridge on Old SR 74. This closure will begin on Monday, Nov. 14, 2016, and continue through Monday, April 10, 2017, weather permitting.

A detour will be put into place and signage will mark the detour route within the project area.

Widening to improve safety and access

Clermont County Engineer Pat Manger said that this work is needed to improve safety and access in and around the project area. “Old SR 74 is being widened to include a center turn lane,” he said. “Center turn lanes are used to improve safety and the flow of traffic on local roadways. They lower the number of rear-end collisions and reduce conflict points that can potentially lead to accidents. This will not only improve the safety and geometry of the roadway, but will also improve access along this section of the Old SR 74 corridor. It will also support the recent extension of Old SR 74 to College Drive, and better accommodate future traffic projections for this area.”

The project also includes widening shoulders on each side of the road, as well as adding new curbs and gutters, drainage systems, and sidewalks. The project will also include the installation of new signals with improved sensor technology at the Olive Branch-Stonelick and Amelia-Olive Branch intersections.

Construction will begin this month and continue through the winter as weather allows. Significant activity will resume in the spring of 2017, and the project is expected to be completed by the fall of 2017.

WHAT: A portion of Old SR 74 will be widened to include a center turn lane, additional width will be added to the shoulders on each side of the road, new curbs and gutters will be built, new drainage systems will be put into place, and new sidewalks will be built along the roadway. New traffic signals with improved sensor technology will also be installed.

TRAFFIC IMPACTS: Old SR 74 between Olive Branch-Stonelick Road and Amelia-Olive Branch Road will be closed for widening of the bridge on Old SR 74. A detour will be put into place and signage will mark the detour route within the project area.

TIMING: Monday, Nov. 14, 2016, through Monday, April 10, 2017, weather permitting.

About the Clermont County Transportation Improvement District: The Clermont County Transportation Improvement District (CCTID) works across geographic and political lines to improve the quality of life for Clermont County residents by stimulating economic development through regional transportation improvements. The five-member board is made up of representatives from the Clermont County Engineer’s Office, the City of Milford, Miami and Union Townships, and the private sector. The CCTID is currently working on nearly two dozen roadway improvements that will increase safety, support better traffic flow through the area, and provide the infrastructure for continued economic development throughout the county. More information about the CCTID and their project work can be found on-line at GoClermont.org.

Contacts: Doug Royer, Clermont County Engineer’s Office,
droyer@clermontcountyohio.gov; 513-732-8885

Kaity Dunn, Rasor Marketing Communications, kaity@rasormarketing.com; 513-793-1234 

July 29, 2016

Pavement collapse on Bauer Road due to heavy rains

BATAVIA, Ohio (July 28, 2016)  – The Clermont County Engineer’s Office has closed a portion of Bauer Road just pass Elmwood Road to Clermont Center Drive in Batavia. Approximately 3-4 feet of the road has collapsed, said Woody Woodmansee, Highway Superintendent at the County Engineer Office.

Woodmansee said a pipe that ran under and supported the road lost backfill due to the morning’s heavy rain. The road is closed until further notice, Woodmansee said, adding that the Engineer’s Office would meet Friday morning to address the issue quickly.

Many Clermont County offices are located on Clermont Center Drive, including Job and Family Services, Probate and Juvenile Court, Domestic Relations Court, and the Engineer’s Office. Staff and the public can access Clermont Center Drive by taking SR 32 to Herold Road; a left on SR 276; and left on Bauer Road.

Additional information: Woody Woodmansee, 513-479-9065.

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February 26, 2016

30 miles of county roads to be resurfaced in 2016

BATAVIA, Ohio (Feb. 26, 2016) – The Clermont County Engineer’s Office will resurface approximately 30 miles of road in 2016.2016 county road resurfacing map

Eight roads are included in this, and they are grouped into three projects:

— Taylor Pike (State Route 133 south to State Route 133 north)
— Lakin-Chapel Road (Swings Corner Road to State Route 133)
— Elklick Road (State Route 222 to dead end)
o Approximately 10 miles at a cost of $1 million

— Old State Route 32 (Village of Batavia to Clermont County line)
o Approximately 8 miles at a cost of $2 million

— Branch Hill Loveland Road (Branch Hill Guinea Pike to City of Loveland)
— Clermontville Laurel Road (Spruce Hill Lane to State Route 232)
— Bethel New Richmond Road (Village of New Richmond to State Route 222)
— Frank Willis Memorial Road (US 52 to Franklin Laurel Road)
o Approximately 12 miles at a cost of $1.5 million

The first project will start in early summer and the next two projects will start in the fall. All are expected to be completed this year, said Deputy Engineer Doug Royer. Each road is looked at individually and repairs may include multiple steps such as reconstruction of areas that have failed over the years, sealing major cracks, milling the top layer of asphalt, sealing the entire road width to stop future cracking and other repair methods.  These repairs are done prior to placing the final surface of asphalt.

The Engineer’s Office maintains approximately 400 miles of road in Clermont County. The Engineer’s staff inspect all roads during the year, and determine paving priorities based on volume of traffic, age and condition of the asphalt and future improvements on the road that may damage a new asphalt surface such as waterline replacements or developments, Royer said. Funds for repaving come from gas taxes, driver license fees, and grants.

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