By Scott Halasz
SUGARCREEK TOWNSHIP — After years of litigation and negotiation, Sugarcreek Township and the City of Centerville have resolved their differences regarding fire and emergency medical services for the Cornerstone of Centerville area.
A joint statement released Friday from the city and township said, “Centerville City Council and the Sugarcreek Township Trustees have reached a tentative agreement regarding the funding of future fire and emergency medical services for the Cornerstone of Centerville and those areas of Centerville that are also part of Sugarcreek Township. As part of this tentative agreement and the shared commitment to working together, the Sugarcreek Township Trustees have withdrawn their fire district levy from the November ballot. Both parties will be finalizing the remaining details of this agreement over the next several weeks.”
The two sides had been at odds over how much Centerville, which does not have its own fire department, would be willing to pay for Sugarcreek Township to provide fire and EMS. Centerville said the two negotiated a deal, but the township walked away from an agreement reached in 2014. The township twice tried to create a new fire district, which would have excluded the Centerville-annexed properties and portions of I-675 and adjoining public roads. The trustees rescinded its first attempt but had it on the May ballot until the Ohio Supreme Court ordered it removed because proper procedure was not followed.
The trustees recently took the steps to place it on the November ballot. The city and township also went through court-ordered mediation and were unable to come up with an agreement.