Lakewood Passes Resolution Opposing HB 601 | News
LAKEWOOD, OH - Lakewood City Council unanimously passed a resolution at their regularly scheduled council meeting on November 19, 2012 opposing House Bill 601, a bill that would pave the way for the State of Ohio’s eventual centralized control of municipal income tax by essentially rendering the City of Lakewood powerless over its right to govern its own finances.
As stated in the resolution, “Only municipalities can ensure the prompt and proper auditing of local tax returns to ensure all applicable deductions and declarations are reported, thus also ensuring that all taxpayers pay their fair share without causing higher costs of compliance for all, and must be able to do so without burdensome and costly restrictions included in House Bill 601 created with the only purpose of restricting municipalities from correcting and auditing returns or making assessments.”
The resolution continues, “Only municipalities can aggressively pursue those non‐compliant and delinquent taxpayers who, by their omission or deliberate deceit, drive up the costs of compliance to all.”
If passed, House Bill 601 would not only cause a substantial loss in cash flow and revenue in the amount $570,000 for year 2014, but would also sabotage Lakewood’s ability to collect on delinquent tax filings.
State politicians have systematically placed ever‐increasing tax burdens on cities with the massive depletion of the local government fund, the abolishment of the estate tax, and the expedited phase‐out of tangible personal property tax reimbursements. This bill seeks to further siphon vital dollars from the City by increasing the City’s burdens while lessening the State’s own.
“HB 601 is yet another attempt to crush cash‐strapped Ohio towns like Lakewood by preventing us from enforcing the local tax laws that we have levied on ourselves,” stated Council President Brian Powers.
“In House Bill 601, down‐state politicians are attempting to gut the home‐rule guarantees of the Ohio Constitution by imposing a State‐mandated tax scheme on local governments.“
The resolution directs the Clerk of Council to forward the resolution to Governor John Kasich, Lieutenant Governor Mary Taylor, the Clerks of both the Ohio House and Senate, Ohio Tax Commissioner Joe Testa, the Councils and Mayors of neighboring cities and villages to formally declare strong opposition to HB 601.