TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Toledo's temporary income tax is up for renewal this November and the wording on the ballot is intricate. Voters will see language about splitting up money and transferring funds.
Here's what it all means:
Toledo's temporary income tax gets split up into thirds. That's a third for the General Fund, a third specifically for Police and Fire, and a third for the Capital Improvement Fund.
But George Sarantou, city finance director, says most of the $57 million generated from the tax really goes to police and fire. Sarantou says Toledo spends most of its money on personnel and 88 percent of city personnel work for public safety.
"It's just impossible to meet those budget expenditures without using almost every single penny of the three-quarter percent for public safety," said Sarantou.
The General Fund is the city's main pot for city services. The Police and Fire fund is for safety services. The Capital Improvement Fund pays for things like road repair.
The city has been able to transfer money from the Capital Improvement Fund to Police and Fire because voters said 'YES' before. That's the other part you'll find on the ballot - giving the city the ability to transfer that money again.
Sarantou says they need to transfer the money because of an $83 million d rop in state funding over the past several years.
"So to make up for that - what is the biggest component in the General Fund? It's police and fire," said Sarantou. "And those budgets have increased over time, and basically that's because public safety is the number one responsibility of local government."
If the temporary tax doesn't pass, hundreds of police and fire personnel would be cut, but that's not all.