Trotwood council puts income tax request back on November ballot

The 0.5% tax increase to pay for road improvements was denied by voters in May

The city of Trotwood will again ask voters to approve a five-year, 0.5% income tax levy for road improvements this November.

The levy request, which would generate around $1 million per year in additional revenue for the city, was first placed on the ballot in May and was narrowly rejected, with 51.8% of voters saying no.

“I think, based on the failure of the levy by a small margin, there is a direct correlation between some residents needing more information and/or education about the levy, as well as the component of inflation and the economy impacting their decision,” City Manager Quincy Pope said following the vote.

The tax would be imposed for a period of five years, and for someone with $50,000 in taxable income per year, the levy would cost an extra $250 annually. The tax would apply to the earned income of those working within the city of Trotwood, including nonresidents who commute to the city for work.

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Trotwood’s current local income tax rate is 2.25%, which generates about $4.7 million annually. An increase to 2.75%, and the resulting addition of $1 million in revenue per year, would allow the city to pave about 5.4 lane miles of road each year, city officials say.

Trotwood’s street budget for 2022 is $1.9 million, and according to Pope, the city will continue with its annual resurfacing program. However, he noted it will take longer to address some of the road maintenance needs throughout the community, specifically those in residential areas, which this levy is intended to provide funds for.

Council voted in August to allow the levy request to be placed on the November ballot. The motion was passed 5-1, with Vice Mayor Yvette Page opposed and Councilwoman Rhonda Finley abstaining.

In January, Finley had raised concerns regarding the tax increase, citing rising inflation and the goal for Trotwood to remain an appealing location for new businesses.

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