CLAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Clayton City Council voted 4-3 in favor of a controversial proposed housing development one month ago.

A movement called Keep Clayton Rural is made of Clayton residents. It gathered more than 1,000 signatures to get the referendum onto the ballot.

The council voted 4 to 3 again at Thursday’s council meeting, voting in favor of adding a controversial proposed housing development to the 2024 ballot to let the voters decide.

Kenneth Henning, a Clayton city council member, continually voted against the proposed development located along Phillipsburg-Union Road and Haber Road. He has served on the council for 11 years and says that this is the most involved he has ever seen the community regarding a project.

Opponents of the development say that community leaders are breaking a promise from when the Randolph Township and Village of Clayton merged in 1998 to create the city of Clayton.

“Development north of State Route 40 would not happen. It would be a rural part of the community,” said Henning. “So unfortunately, there’s nothing in writing about that promise. It was word of mouth.”

Dennis Lieberman, another Clayton city council member, says one of the biggest motivations of the council is planning for the financial future of the city.

“It’s the only way you find that revenue without just raising taxes willy-nilly. The only way you find that revenue is by people moving into the area so that you can spread the tax burden among everybody,” said Lieberman.

Clayton City Manager Amanda Zimmerlin says there are numerous financial opportunities, which the new development could allow for current and future residents of the city.

“It is good from an income tax perspective because there will be new people living and working in Clayton. And then also, you know, once we get those rooftops, it also helps bring in other business,” said Zimmerlin.