Mahoning County voters won't see sales tax increase on May ballo - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Mahoning County voters won't see sales tax increase on May ballot

Posted: Updated:

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - A surprise move, as Mahoning County Commissioners decide not to put an additional one-quarter percent sales tax increase on the May ballot. So what led to the decision?

Commissioners say it was clear after holding public hearings on the issue, and listening to what was being said around the community, that an additional tax was not a good idea, at least not at this time.

The one-quarter percent increase would have been in addition to the 1% sales tax in Mahoning County that's already in place.

Commissioners, the Sheriff and Auditor say they do not want to jeopardize the sales tax "renewal" that's already up for a vote in May.

Mahoning County Auditor Michael Sciortino is the county's chief financial officer, "I don't think it would have passed number 1. ... And number 2, I've listened to the people. I think it's time to be accountable, and do a better job of selling the 1/2% renewal which we need."

David Ditzler, the current Chairman of the Mahoning County Board of Commissioners tells 21 News, "As we saw several years back, when it was reduced by 1/2% to a 1/2%, we lost probably $50-Million coming into the county. ... And the time that it took to recover from that."

But county leaders maintain despite their decision, the additional one-quarter percent sales tax is desperately needed because revenue from the state's local government fund and other sources have reduced the general fund by $10-Million since 2008.

The county is likely to experience a $2-Million dollar deficit this year, and a $5-Million dollar deficit next year.

The justice system that supports public safety is the largest share of the county's general fund.

Sheriff Jerry Greene is concerned that his staff and jail operations will take the brunt of any financial cuts, "one of the unfortunate things is, I know that the biggest impact is going to be on my office. You know we've done a lot of things to be pro-active and generate money, but it's clearly not enough. We're a third smaller than we've been in the past. Everybody is working harder, doing a good job. I just hate to see something like this cut the legs out from under us."

Commissioner David Ditzler says he hopes they can revisit the issue of an additional one-quarter percent sales tax in November. But county leaders would like to have some type of independent audit done to support what they've been saying all along -- that they are doing more with less, and that a one-quarter percent increase is desperately needed. Commissioner Ditzler also believes earmarking the money specifically for justice system expenses, meaning the Sheriff's Department, the courts, the prosecutors office -- may make voters more supportive, because they'll know exactly where the money is being spent.

  • More From wfmj.comMore>>

  • Toledo zoo welcomes 100-year-old tortoise

    Toledo zoo welcomes 100-year-old tortoise

    Thursday, August 28 2014 8:11 AM EDT2014-08-28 12:11:09 GMT
    TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - The newest resident of the Toledo Zoo is a 100-year-old dome-shelled Galapagos tortoise that weighs in at 440 pounds. The tortoise, named Emerson, arrived at the zoo Wednesday night from the San Diego Zoo. He was escorted by Toledo Zoo personnel on his flight to Detroit before being driven to Toledo and uncrated inside a heated shed. Handlers welcomed him with carrot and sweet potato treats and a neck rub. The (Toledo) Blade reports Emerson is the zoo's first Galapagos to...More >>
    TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - The newest resident of the Toledo Zoo is a 100-year-old dome-shelled Galapagos tortoise that weighs in at 440 pounds. The tortoise, named Emerson, arrived at the zoo Wednesday night from the San Diego Zoo. He was escorted by Toledo Zoo personnel on his flight to Detroit before being driven to Toledo and uncrated inside a heated shed. Handlers welcomed him with carrot and sweet potato treats and a neck rub. The (Toledo) Blade reports Emerson is the zoo's first Galapagos to...More >>
  • Ohio serial rapist gets 135 years in prison

    Ohio serial rapist gets 135 years in prison

    Thursday, August 28 2014 8:10 AM EDT2014-08-28 12:10:21 GMT
    CLEVELAND (AP) - A man who was linked to seven Cleveland-area rapes when authorities reopened hundreds of previously unsolved rape cases has been sentenced to up to 135 years in prison. The sentence by a judge in Cuyahoga County on Wednesday means 69-year-old Robert Green likely will never get out of prison. He was indicted in five of the cases in November and two more in May. He pleaded guilty. The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reports that the rapes occurred over nearly a decade. They were unso...More >>
    CLEVELAND (AP) - A man who was linked to seven Cleveland-area rapes when authorities reopened hundreds of previously unsolved rape cases has been sentenced to up to 135 years in prison. The sentence by a judge in Cuyahoga County on Wednesday means 69-year-old Robert Green likely will never get out of prison. He was indicted in five of the cases in November and two more in May. He pleaded guilty. The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reports that the rapes occurred over nearly a decade. They were unso...More >>
  • Drone delays landing of Ohio hospital chopper

    Drone delays landing of Ohio hospital chopper

    Thursday, August 28 2014 8:08 AM EDT2014-08-28 12:08:46 GMT
    DAYTON, Ohio (AP) - Officials at a southwest Ohio hospital say a drone flying near the building delayed the landing of an emergency medical helicopter for nine minutes. The health of the patient aboard the helicopter trying to land at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton wasn't compromised, but an official says the man flying the drone violated an FAA guideline that the operator must be at least 400 feet away from a hospital. Dayton Daily News reports that the Monday incident highlights the need ...More >>
    DAYTON, Ohio (AP) - Officials at a southwest Ohio hospital say a drone flying near the building delayed the landing of an emergency medical helicopter for nine minutes. The health of the patient aboard the helicopter trying to land at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton wasn't compromised, but an official says the man flying the drone violated an FAA guideline that the operator must be at least 400 feet away from a hospital. Dayton Daily News reports that the Monday incident highlights the need ...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms