COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WYTV) – Voters in Columbiana County will decide the fate of funding for local government this May.
On Wednesday morning, commissioners held a public hearing before voting to place a 1 percent sales tax renewal issue on the May 5 primary election ballot. The measure brings in approximately $10 to $11 million a year, or about 60 percent of the county’s general fund budget, which is just under $20 million.
Commissioners said they have worked to keep the budget under control.
“We have been good stewards of that money, previous commissioners and this board today. And I think we have done a wise job at our spending and we have been holding our spending down,” Columbiana County Commissioner Tim Weigle said. “You know, over the past six years, our budget has not gone up with the cost of living. Six years ago, it was $18 million or slightly higher and today it is not even $20 million.”
Besides the renewal issue, the county also collects a half-percent portion of the tax, which is continuous.
Commissioners said they return 2 mills of the county’s real estate tax to local property owners, amounting to about $3 million a year, as an exchange for encouraging voters to support the sales tax.