The residents of Brady Lake narrowly voted this week to dissolve the tiny Portage County village.
This was the second vote in four years to disband the roughly 500-resident village. A 2014 state audit found the village was consistently mismanaging funds.
Brady Lake’s state funding, which paid for everything from EMS services to road maintenance, had been steadily declining. Mayor Hal Lehman says Brady Lake’s fate is part of a trend.
“A lot of municipalities were getting cut the same as we did, whether it be village or township,” Lehman says.
According to the Ohio Township Association, state law doesn’t specify how to handle any remaining debt. In 2004, then-Attorney General Jim Petro used a new law to dissolve the village of New Rome, near Columbus, which then sold off its remaining assets to Prairie Township.
Mayor Lehman hopes the village will become part of Franklin Township. He is trying to secure emergency state funding to repair the village's crumbling roads.
The vote to dissolve still needs to be certified by the county and the state. What happens after that is unclear.