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Beavercreek asking voters to pass 1% income tax in November

The city of Beavercreek is considering an 1% earned income tax to appear on the November 2020 Ballot. The tax will help fix roads and other services.JIMNOELKER/STAFF
The city of Beavercreek is considering an 1% earned income tax to appear on the November 2020 Ballot. The tax will help fix roads and other services.JIMNOELKER/STAFF

Beavercreek voters will decide at the polls if they want to see their city’s first ever income tax.

Beavercreek City Council unanimously approved a resolution Monday to place a 1% income tax on the November ballot.

If it passes, the 1% earned income tax would not be collected until Jan. 1, 2022. A 3.4 mill property tax levy that is scheduled to expire at the end of 2021 will not be renewed. The proposal says none of the street, police, parks and infrastructure bond levies planned for 2021-2023 would be put on the ballot if an earned income tax was put in place.

“I think it’s a straight forward plan,” said Mayor Bob Stone. “It is the right time and I think the more people that have their voices heard, the better off we’re going to understand what the public wants, whether it’s a yes, or whether it’s a no. We are going to have the largest turnout at the Presidential election.”

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The income tax proposal was brought forward to city council by a committee of residents, led by former Beavercreek Mayor Brian Jarvis, in February. The group said it had been researching and meeting for over a year prior.

Beavercreek is one of the few Ohio cities without an earned income tax.

“I’ve said all along that Beavercreek desperately needs an alternative revenue source to fund our infrastructure needs and this legislation gives our constituents the ability to cast their vote to fundamentally change how our city is funded,” said city council member Pete Bales.

This is not the first time the city has attempted to add an earned income tax.

In 2013, voters turned down a 1.5% earned income tax because opponents said the tax did not have enough accountability about how the money would be spent for capital improvements.

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In 1984, four years after the city was incorporated, voters defeated a 1.5% income tax by a nearly 4 to 1 margin. Ten years later, voters said “no” to a 1% income tax by a similar margin.

Opposition groups like the Beavercreek Tax Busters have continuously fought the issue whenever a push for an income tax resurfaces.

“When you have a city income tax, you don’t really know where it’s going,” said John Mitchell, Tax Buster member and Beavercreek resident. “It goes into the treasury and I think they kind of say ‘Oh we’re going to target infrastructure.’ Well, yeah — but they don’t say which infrastructure.”

If approved, the 1% income tax will reduce city property taxes for all city property owners, according to a Beavercreek release, it provides a 100% credit to Beavercreek residents for city taxes that are paid, up to 1%, to other cities, exempts retirement, social security and active military pay and captures income taxes from everyone working within the city limits.