Sin Tax to be on the May Primary ballot

Sin Tax to be on the May Primary ballot

Cuyahoga County Council has unanimously voted to place the Sin Tax extension on the May Primary ballot.

The debate on the renewal of the tax continued Tuesday evening at a meeting in downtown Cleveland.

Council voted 11-0 in favor of the tax.

The deadline at Board of Elections to put an issue on the May ballot is Feb 5.

Five Reasons Why Renewing the Alcohol and Cigarette Tax is Important

  • It's not a tax increase. It's a low cost tax on non-essentials and it's the best way to ensure that our three major league sports venues remain in major league condition.  The tax costs two cents on a bottle of beer, about 1.5 cents on a glass of wine and less than a nickel on a pack of cigarettes.
  • Progressive Field, FirstEnergy Stadium and Quicken Loans Arena are owned by the public – not the teams.  We need to protect the public investment in these facilities by maintaining them.  The existing tax provides the revenue to do that.
  • If the tax is not extended, it will expire in 2015.  It will then be up to the City of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County to find the funds to pay for maintenance and repairs.  The tax generates about $13 million annually.
  • Our three major league sports venues are no longer new – Progressive Field and Quicken Loans Arena are 20 years old.  Major repairs – such as a roof replacement at the Q – are looming.  The tax allows us to protect our public investment.
  • Cleveland is one of only 15 cities to have franchises in MLB, the NBA and the NFL – and we are among the smallest metropolitan areas among those cities.  Being a major league city helps our city in innumerable ways and draws more than four million people a year to Cleveland for games and other events at these three venues.  More than half of those people live outside of Cuyahoga County.  Major league sports draws millions of visitors to Cleveland, where they patronize restaurants, bars and other entertainment venues in addition to the arena, ballpark and stadium.

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