By Megan Alley
The village of Amelia council recently approved imposing a 1 percent earnings tax on people who live or work in the village.
The move comes as the village prepares to become a city after the results of the 2020 census are tallied; the state of Ohio mandates that municipalities with more than 50,00 residents become cities.
“In order for the village to keep moving forward and to maintain future progress, council has had to make some very hard and tough decisions,” read a statement posted on Amelia’s Facebook page. “Amelia is growing with new housing and businesses and our infrastructure will have to be maintained regularly such as roads, lighting and parks. We do not have levies to fund these.”
Amelia is the last municipality in Clermont County to implement an earnings tax, according to Mayor Todd Hart.
The earnings tax is expected to net the village about $1.12 million annually, after a ramp up period of about three years.
The decision comes on the heels of the village finding out that the state is handing over the responsibility of maintaining state Route 125; the state will continue to paint, salt and plow the road, but Amelia is now responsible for making repairs to the road, Hart explained.
The earnings tax, which will go into effect in July, will apply to earned income; it will not apply to retirement income, senior citizens and those on disability income.
Residents can expect to get a letter in the mail soon from the Regional Income Tax Authority explaining how the tax works.
Those with questions are asked to contact the village or RITA.
“I hope [those affected] realize that we were the last village in Clermont County to implement an earnings tax … that with the cutbacks on local government funding … that we were able to hold off six or seven years, longer than we an anticipated, and I think with council making this decision now, I give them a compliment for doing that,” Hart said.
ODOT has told the village that it will be responsible for all aspects of state Route 125 after 2020.
“Being that we’re coming up on that in the next couple of years, we almost need some reserve in there so we can do that,” Hart said, adding, “I think people will be happy when we start repairing their streets and roads.”