CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - "Taxation Without Representation" it's the phrase that created our country. Our forefathers revolted against paying taxes to a government with which they had no vote.
Now 240 years later, it's time to revolt against the mayor's idea to raise Cleveland's municipal income tax from 2% to 2.5% -- 25% more dollars out of the wages of people working in Cleveland. According to the mayor's office, about 87% of the tax money paid comes from suburbanites who don't even get to vote on it. It doesn't get any more UN-American than that.
The mayor makes some reasonable arguments about why the city needs the money.
- 18 million in lost property tax
- more than one-hundred-eleven million lost from state tax cuts since 2010.
- eleven-million to implement the doj decree to improve our police department
But the mayor has plenty of responsibility for these budget problems. The people who let the police department get out of control, both received promotions and raises on their six-figure salaries. Our Chief Investigator Carl Monday has documented waste in trash collection, police and city council lunches and dinners.
And the biggest problem, new city worker contracts with numerous city unions that pay almost $43 million more in retro-pay and benefits from 2013 through 2016. Who negotiated these deals? Increasing the city's income tax is short-sighted. How long will the city's current renaissance last if we make businesses and their employees pay a premium to be in Cleveland? It's unfair and counter-productive.
If the mayor wants to fight for our fair share of state money, we're on board. Ohio lets us vote. But we would vote no on the city income tax increase… that is, if we had a vote. Call the mayor's office at 216-664-3990 and let him know what you think. I'm Dominic Mancuso and that's how we see it.
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