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In May 2017, Springfield voters passed a 0.4% earned income tax rate increase by a 2-to-1 margin. The levy would generate an additional $6.7 million a year for the city, restoring vital services to the community that had been cut during a budget crisis that was not of Springfield’s own making.

Learn more about the history of the budget crisis, how the City managed the funding crunch over a decade, and how the Springfield community came together to find practical solutions for a better future.

Our Progress: May 2017 to December 2019


Our promise: To reopen Johnny Lytle Avenue community police station and reinstate community programs such as Bike Camp and Citizen’s Police Academy.

      • Substation reopened in July 2017 and is currently the location of the Springfield Police Division Community Response Team
      • Officers active in community and neighborhood events
      • Citizen’s Police Academy resumed with 60+ graduates
      • Three Bike Camps held with 100+ child participants

​Safe Streets

Our Promise: Add six police officers to combat violent crime and heroin epidemic and provide critical funding needed to keep our neighborhoods safe.

      • Open recruitment campaigns held in 2017, 2018 and 2019
      • Lateral hires (from other law enforcement agencies) made in 2017 through 2019
      • Safe Streets Task Force reinstated in 2018-2019
      • More than 490 arrests and seized firearms, methamphetamine, heroin and crack cocaine
      • Search warrants resulted in the capture of 120 grams of cocaine, 4 lbs. of marijuana, and $13,070 in cash
      • Reinstated community programs such as Bike Camp and Citizen’s Police Academy.

Fire / EMS

Our Promise: Reopen Fire Station #5 and reinstate a Fire/EMS Unit and invest in safety equipment, providing vital resources for our first responders.

      • Fire Station #5 reopened in July 2017 and remains in operation
      • Five new ambulances purchased and built at the local International Plant are currently in operation
      • Eight FLIR Systems thermal imagers that locate hotspots and improve safety purchased in January 2019
      • Carbon monoxide detectors purchased and credited for saving the lives of more than 100 people
      • Service improved with purchase of mechanical CPR devices and new handheld radios


Our Promise: Dedicate $2 million to improve neighborhood streets and improve streets making Springfield a better place.

      • Neighborhood Street Paving Program launched in 2018
      • More than $4 million spent on repaving neighborhood streets in 2018 and 2019
      • Total of 26 neighborhood streets repaved
History of the Budget Crisis

History of the Budget Crisis

Between 2007 and 2017, the State of Ohio cut Springfield’s funding by more than $21.5 million. Springfield was not alone – reductions in state revenue sharing placed many Ohio cities in fiscal distress. The loss of this funding was the single largest reason for Springfield’s fiscal crisis.

Cutting Public Services

Springfield responded to the cuts with proactive fiscal responsibility by cutting expenses and keeping spending flat for more than 10 years. The City was forced to cut vital public services in order to remain solvent. Reductions included:

  • Closure of the Springfield Fire Rescue Division Station #5 at 1707 Commerce Road
  • Elimination of one fire and one EMS unit.
  • Closure of the Springfield Police Division’s substation at 17 W. Johnny Lytle Ave., and loss of our presence in the neighborhood and impacting our efforts in community policing.
  • Cancellation of community police and fire programs, including Bike Camp and Citizen’s Police Academy.
  • Reduced funding to National Trail Parks and Recreation District.
  • Cut of at least 145 city staff positions for an overall reduction of more than 20 percent.

Had our community not taken action, further cuts would have been inevitable, and public safety would have been compromised. We needed to find a solution.


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