With 80 of 80 precincts reporting, there were 14,086 "yes" votes to 6,909 "no" votes. That's 67 to 33 percent. G
Once election results are certified, the Greene County Public Safety Initiative will raise about $5 million a year and would add 18 patrol deputies to the sheriff's office and six detectives. The jail will get 40 more correctional officers.
"This is overwhelming," says Sheriff Jim Arnott. "Almost 70 percent. That is not just winning. That is a landslide. That is the community telling us exactly where they want to put their priority. The priority is public safety and I'm so happy that it turned out this way. It sends such a great message not only to the community but back to us, saying, 'This is what we want and this is what we want you to focus on,' and that's exactly what we're going to do."
The money from the tax would also add five prosecutors, seven deputy juvenile officers, several other positions, support staff and equipment.
"It is a huge issue for response times to be over 13 minutes in the county," says Sheriff Arnott. "That's just not acceptable. And that's for a crime in progress. That's not a burglary that happened or a crime that happened. Those are sometimes an hour or more."
Supporters of the tax say you won't notice a change in what you pay; it would phase in as another tax phases out.
The tax was put on the ballot by the Greene County Commission even though Presiding Commissioner Jim Viebrock voted against the idea.