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Oak Park Passes Public Safety Millage

The measure was approved by 53.62 percent of the 14,065 voters who weighed in.

Voters in Oak Park on Tuesday approved a millage request to fund Public Safety retirees' pensions and health care.

The measure was approved by 53.62 percent of the 14,065 voters who weighed in, according to the Oakland County Clerk. It will add up to 7 mills for 7 years to fund a separate retirement system for public safety officers, the Detroit Free Press says.

The millage's approval follows the August passage in Berkley of a 3-mill Headlee Override that will raise $1.362 million, in part, to cover operating costs for the city's Public Safety Department, which also has grappled with expenses related to retirees and health care.

The Oak Park millage's passage will allow the city, which lost 15 public safety officers through layoffs and early retirements this year, to rehire at least three laid-off officers and have more money for city services, according to a report in The Daily Tribune.

City Manager Richard Fox told The Daily Tribune in July that the city pays approximately $2.8 million a year to fund costs related to public safety retirees.

"I expect the overall taxable values of our community to continue to decline through fiscal year 2014-15," City Manager Erik Tungate wrote Monday on Oak Park's Facebook page. "After that, I expect a small two percent improvement going forward. With increasing health care and legacy costs, it's possible we won't be able to provide our current level of service to you without a new source of funding to assist us."

These results are unofficial until confirmed by the Oakland County clerk.

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