Council approves income tax code

By Scott Halasz - [email protected]

BEAVERCREEK — Beavercreek residents could be voting on an income tax in the near future.

During Monday’s regular meeting, council unanimously approved an ordinance creating an income tax chapter to the city’s codified ordinances. The new chapter allows the city to ask voters to approve a 1 percent income tax.

Passage of the ordinance does not guarantee the city will place the issue on the ballot, but if it does and the income tax is approved by voters, it will begin Jan. 1, 2022. The city has tried three previous times to enact a property tax, the last coming in 2013. Beavercreek is one of six municipalities in the Dayton area not to have an income tax.

If a tax is approved, the 3.4 mill property tax levy for streets that expires Dec. 31, 2021 would not be renewed providing property tax relief, according to wording of the tax code. Bill Kucera, financial administrative services director, said at previous meeting that passage of the tax could reduce the number of levies the city seeks in the future and could help fund a backlog of infrastructure and capital improvement projects.

The city will provide a credit up to 1 percent for residents who pay income taxes elsewhere and there are myriad exemptions including military pay, Social Security benefits, unemployment, child support/alimony, and intangible income such as income yield, interest, capital gains, dividends or income arising from ownership, sale, exchange or other disposition of intangible property.

Monday’s action represented the ordinance’s third reading and third public hearing, which is not required, but Mayor Bob Stone said it was important to give this issue as much exposure as possible.

Tony Corvo, who spoke against the income tax at previous meetings, said a property tax levy allows citizens to control spending, whereas an income tax transfers that power to the elected officials. He referenced a speaker from a previous meeting who indicated she trusted council to make the right decision.

“I don’t trust you when you’re sitting in those seats,” Corvo said. “I don’t trust the state legislature. I don’t trust the federal legislature. That’s a good thing. That’s built into the constitution.”

He said even if the current council members are all “angels,” he worries about the council members elected after them.

Corvo was the only to speak against the income tax.

Mark Walsh said it’s “financial suicide for the city to give this money to the surrounding communities when we have pressing needs here in Beavercreek.”

He said an income tax is better than a property tax for unemployed residents because if they have no income, that pays no tax. But a property tax must be paid regardless.

Walsh added that he trusts the council.

“I would encourage anybody who does not trust the council to run for council,” he said.

Al Cummings, who has lived in Beavercreek for 40 years said he also trusts the council and is in favor of the income tax.

“I like the idea of having nonresidents pay our bills, frankly,” he said, adding that an income tax will allow the city to create a funding plan for the future.

Carol Graff, a 54-year resident of Beavercreek said retired residents, active duty military and those paying an earnings tax elsewhere could use property tax relief. She added that property taxes alone do not sustain the city.

Former Beavercreek Mayor Brian Jarvis said that Beavercreek has the fourth-highest effective city property tax millage in Montgomery and Greene counties.

By Scott Halasz

[email protected]

Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.

Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.