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Fire district grows, passes levy

MAYNARD — Barton-Crescent Fire District No. 5 grew by about one-third Tuesday evening, when unofficial vote totals revealed that new territory would be added along with a continuous 5-mill property tax levy.

The district sought to add territory within the unincorporated village of Maynard, which had been without its own fire department for about a year and a half.

In March 2018, the Maynard Volunteer Fire Department closed its doors for good after 50 years of serving the community. It primarily had served the areas of Colerain and Wheeling townships, parts of which were also covered by the Cumberland Trail Fire District and Barton VFD. Department officials cited a lack of funds and volunteers in making the decision to disband.

When the Maynard VFD first opened around 1950, the community was a booming village with a larger population and many shops and businesses. In 2016, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated the population at 417 residents; in 1916, the population was more than 1,500.

On Election Day, residents of Maynard voted 54-12 in favor of the new 5-mill levy and for coverage by the Barton-Crescent district, according to numbers released by the Belmont County Board of Elections.

“The good news is our levy passed,” Barton fire Lt. John Burdock said upon hearing the results.

He explained that the Barton VFD had provided emergency medical coverage for the Maynard area for four or five years prior to that department’s collapse. In the year and a half since the VFD closed, Barton also has been providing fire protection for that area.

“They never had a levy,” he added of Maynard.

Burdock said the Barton VFD already officially served about 400 households prior to the vote. The election result will add another 200-250 households to that total.

“The citizens realized that to have service, they have to pay something. We’re very appreciative,” he said.

Burdock extended special thanks to all Maynard residents who went door-to-door urging support for the levy. He also thanked everyone who went to the polls and cast ballots in favor of the measure.

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