On Feb. 1, Champaign County’s 12 townships will join Ohio’s townships and residents in celebrating the 20th anniversary of Ohio Township Day. House Bill 652, enacted in 1998, designated the first of February as Ohio Township Day and that was the first year in which it was celebrated.
This day has been set aside to recognize the hard work and dedication of township trustees and fiscal officers who promote grassroots government. It was the first form of government in Ohio. The 1,308 townships across the state serve nearly 40 percent of Ohio’s population. Road maintenance, fire protection, zoning and land use planning, and parks and recreation, provide an example of only a few of a township’s responsibilities, which are governed by the Ohio Revised Code.
“Townships certainly deserve a day to be celebrated,” stated OTA Executive Director Matthew DeTemple. “They are an efficient and effective form of local government. Townships account for only 2.7 percent of total spent on state and local government in Ohio. People are recognizing the benefits of living in townships. From 2000 to 2010, virtually all of Ohio’s population growth occurred in townships. The Ohio Township Association, which is celebrating its 90th Anniversary in 2018, is proud to join with townships in celebrating February 1st.”
The Ohio Township Association is a statewide organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of township government in Ohio. The Association was founded on June 28, 1928, and is organized in 87 Ohio counties. The Association has more than 5,200 active members, made up of trustees and fiscal officers from Ohio’s 1,308 townships, and more than 4,000 associate members.
The Champaign County Township Association is comprised of 12 townships’ elected officials, zoning inspectors and associate members from Adams, Concord, Goshen, Harrison, Jackson, Johnson, Mad River, Rush, Salem, Union, Urbana and Wayne townships. The CCTA goal is to collaborate on issues which may enable each township to provide more efficient and cost effective services to the folks they represent. The CCTA association in 2015 developed a scholarship program funded by donations that awards two scholarship’s each year; one $500 Community Involvement Scholarship and one $500.00 Academic achievement scholarship. The CCTA has worked with each of the Champaign County Schools to administer the program through each of the schools guidance counselors and are very happy to work with the schools.
The CCTA would like to encourage all citizens of Champaign County to become engaged with township government. Each Township meets at least once per month, usually in the evenings and most townships have opportunities for involvement serving on the Zoning Board of Appeals or the Zoning Commission.
Submitted by Tim Cassady, Goshen Township trustee and president of the Champaign County Township Association.