West Unity Looks To Resolve Park Issues, Deals With Fallout From Tax Changes

West Unity income tax collections are down 7 percent compared to last year.

Deputy Clerk Katie Baltosser read the report to the Village Council, April 13. Tax collections are down compared to last year, but the report is an improvement over the first quarter report.

The first quarter total ($209,367.61) was down $92,785.19 or 31 percent from 2016. The year started off good with January being $68,683 over the year before, but the next two month’s total fell off sharply.
Much of the blame can be placed at the implementation of HB 5 which has altered the way towns collect business taxes. The impact will be felt when the village does its state-mandated 5-year net operating loss carry forward, Baltosser said.

“I’m really hoping this comes back,” Baltosser said. “Net profits are able to carry a loss for five years. This is the effect that we are going to have.”
The village deals with individual taxes, net-profit (a tax on any profit a business makes) and withholding (the taxes employers collect from their employees.

Net profit taxes are down about $3,000 through April 13 and withholding is down $35,000.

“Businesses are still doing strong,” Baltosser said. “But businesses can carry that loss over for five years.”

The village is still waiting to see if the governor’s proposal to centralize income tax collection for all communities in Columbus will be in the next budget, Fiscal Office Kim Grime said. That will likely take more money from communities.

In other news
The council approved second readings for three pieces of legislation:
– 2017-4 Statement of repair- notice to owners
– 2017-5 Amending construction on Section 521.065
– 2017-6 Amending “New Home Construction” in Section 521.067.
– Approving a resolution to levy 5 mills to fund operations.

The council heard Administrator Joshua Fritsch and learned:
There is still time to see if ODOT will take 3 inches off US 20A when it comes through.

The old dump truck was sold for $10,500.

The village tree committee will meet at 7 p.m. May 11 to discuss planting new trees. Trees should be planted in October, Fritsch said.

The Safety Committee will meet May 11 at 6:30 p.m.
The Park Committee will meet at 5:15 p.m. April 27 to discuss some upcoming issues. The Park Committee can only make recommendations to the council and the council will only spend money on capital improvement projects, Mayor Peg Bernath said.
Village Solicitor Ryan Thompson wants to know what the committee thinks it is supposed to be doing.

“What they are looking for is a commitment to give them money every year and we can’t do that,” Thompson said. The solicitor wants to know how the village is responsible to make improvements to a building it doesn’t even have a key to, he said.

Council also discussed how the local baseball and softball league will have to schedule its tournaments with the village first.

The council also approved posting new 25 mph speed limit signs on Pine Street.

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