BRUNSWICK –– City Council voted Monday night to place an income tax renewal on the November ballot to continue funding for the city’s safety forces.
In 2017, voters approved increasing the safety levy, which funds the police and fire departments, from 1.5 percent to 2 percent. This 2 percent temporary income tax levy will expire in 2022 and the city is looking to put the renewal on the November ballot to allow for planning.
This levy, which generates about $19 million a year, accounts for about half of the funding to the city’s safety departments.
“We’ve proven, in my opinion, we’ve proven to the community that we are doing what we said we would,” City Manager Carl DeForest said. “We use that money for police and fire staffing. We were just named as one of the safest cities in Ohio … now is the time to do it and do it right. It also gives us time to plan for the future.”
“This provides for such a high percentage of maintaining our safety forces,” Ward 2 Councilman Nick Hanek said. “The city is never going to experience such a decrease in population that they need to reduce our safety forces.”
Council voted unanimously to place the issue before electors. If passed, it will result in collections for another five years starting in 2022.
In other news, Brunswick police will participate in Light Ohio Blue from May 8-16 in an effort to show support for law enforcement.
“Quietly, everyone always does support our safety forces,” At Large Councilman Joe Delsanter said. “Every once in a while, we have to do it loudly and say ‘We do support our safety forces’.”
To show support for the department, residents can participate by placing blue bulbs in exterior porch lights, wrapping blue lights around their homes or businesses, placing blue ribbons on their mailboxes and wearing blue on Wednesday, May 15.