MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ohio (WDTN) - A group is exploring the possibility of merging local governments in Montgomery County.
OneDayton has been working for two years on what it would take to merge the county, cities and townships and what the benefits would be.
Over the next year the group plans to hold forums to discuss the possibilities with county residents.
The options range from just sharing some services between governments to creating a single unity government in the county.
"I think the answer is we must do something," says Phil Parker, head of the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce. "The status quo just isn't working."
Right now Montgomery County has 28 separate jurisdictions.
If they were all merged, the county would become the second largest metro area in Ohio.
Those with OneDayton think combining rather than competing with each other would help lure jobs here.
"We think the structure of government at the local level has a big impact on how well we compete," says Montgomery County Commissioner Dan Foley.
Those with OneDayton believe combining services would also save taxpayers money, although how much is unknown. The group plans to study that.
OneDayton says Ohio law would allow a merger.
The group says any action like that would be presented to voters in the county.
"People would have the opportunity to say I like it, I don't like it, I'm indifferent about it," Foley says.
The group says it has no plans to merge school districts. They would remain unchanged.
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