West Carrollton tax levy approved

Voters approved a 0.25-percent hike in the city’s rate to 2.25 percent, forestalling further cuts in services.

The five-year renewable measure will raise $600,000 for the general fund, which has lost $670,000 a year due to reductions in state funding and local job losses.

The increase will cost an affected resident who earns $40,000 a year an additional $100, or about $8 per month.

An estimated 60 percent of taxpayers won’t be affected. They either work in other communities with equal or higher income tax rates, or receive Social Security, disability or unemployment benefits.

“This means there will be no reductions in the services that residents are accustomed to,” said Mayor Jeff Sanner. “We need the revenue after the losses we’ve had.”

The increase will lift the city of 13,143 into the area’s top seven for municipal payroll tax rates — those at 2.25 percent or higher. In Montgomery County, those include Miamisburg, Dayton, Oakwood, Trotwood and Kettering. Five others are at 2 percent.

The measure will have to be approved again in 2018 if the city wants to retain it.

City manager Brad Townsend said there’s hope that an economic upturn, fueled by the city’s proposed riverfront project and development near the Interstate 75 Exit 47 development, will make that unnecessary.

With the tax being the only issue on the city ballot, turnout was low.

“When I voted at about 5 p.m. at my polling station, which includes three precincts, there had been only about a 10 percent turnout until that point,” Sanner said. Unofficially, turnout was 10.4 percent.

Officials had considered a reduction in the income tax credit or an increase in the property tax rate as other ways to increase revenue for basic services including police, fire, emergency medical services, parks and recreation. Both of those options would have affected more residents than the income tax hike.

West Carrollton last raised income taxes in November 2004, when a 0.25-percent hike from 1.75 to 2 percent was approved by a 3,786-2,400 vote.

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