November 2, 2012
Impact of Ohio’s 2012-13 state budget (HB 153)
Ohio’s budget for 2012 and 2013 cut local government aid by a billion dollars. This means cuts in services we depend on, from road repair and emergency services to crossing guards, senior transportation and child protective services. What are the implications for Greene County?
The state cut the Local Government Fund to the county, forcing Greene County to make cuts to jurisdictions within the county. The state also cut direct funding to municipalities, and slashed reimbursements for taxes it had eliminated, taxes that businesses and utilities had paid to local governments. School districts and the public library fund were also cut. Losses in calendar years 2012 and 2013, compared to 2010 and 2011, include, among others:
- Public Library Fund…………….. -$234.0 thousand
- Schools……………………………. -$18.7 million
- County operations………………. -$6.4 million (includes LGF for townships and parks)
- Beavercreek Township…………. -$1.3 million
- Beavercreek………………………… -$1.5 million
- Fairborn…………………………… -$1.4 million
- Xenia………………………………. -$1.2 million
- Yellow Springs…………………… -$142.0 thousand
Losses to health and human service levies
- County Child Services………….. -$285.0 thousand
- County MH/MR/DD…………… -$1.4 million
- General Health District……….. -$141.0 thousand
- County seniors services……….. -$213.0 thousand
Notes and quotes
Budget cuts in Xenia included a three-year pay freeze for all staff and administrators, and the laying off of 30 employees. From “Local officials brace for state fund reductions,” Middletown Journal, April 10, 2012. http://tinyurl.com/8mw4aoh.
Board President, Bill Spahr, said that in the Xenia school district the cuts will shave from the budget $552,000, but will come at the cost of nine elementary teacher positions, three music teacher positions, three physical education teacher positions and two counselors. The district will now have only one counselor to cover all five elementary schools. From “School board to add levy in November,” Xenia Gazette, August 8, 2012. http://tinyurl.com/8v368tw.
“The police department [of Beavercreek] has not replaced police cruisers as often or filled two police officers slots. The department also has not filled a crime-prevention position and many responsibilities previously assigned to a technical services supervisor have been added to a sergeant’s duties. [Beavercreek] also has left three maintenance worker positions and one foreman position in the street department open.” From “School board to add levy in November,” Xenia Gazette, August 8, 2012. http://tinyurl.com/8v368tw.
Because of the closure of its animal shelter due to budget cuts, Fairborn is experiencing a large number of feral cat complaints. From “Feral cat problem plagues Fairborn,” Fairborn Daily Herald, August 8, 2012. http://tinyurl.com/9jcsxtk.
Greene County anticipated a 22 percent cut in funding for the county office serving nutritional needs of families through the WIC program (women, infants and children); Michelle Frizzell, director of the WIC for the Ohio Department of Health, has said the agency has seen consecutive years in federal funding cuts to its administrative budget, dropping 7 percent or from $56.7 million in fiscal year 2011 to $52.8 million in fiscal year 2012. From “Area WIC office moves, lays off 5,” Springfield News Sun, September 28, 2012. http://tinyurl.com/8teh7se.
NOTES: The current state budget cuts the Local Government Fund to counties, municipalities and townships by 25 percent in the first year and by 50 percent in the second year. This 77-year old state revenue sharing program has, for generations, been essential to helping Ohio communities fund schools, provide services, and lift people out of poverty. The current state budget also phases out most of the tangible personal property tax and public utility property tax reimbursements, which were promised to local governments when the state cut taxes in recent years. These are not the only losses to local governments because of this budget. There are others in specific programs. Here we detail some of the bigger shifts. Change in revenues shown here include: Local Government Fund “County Undivided Fund,” which counties share with their cities, townships and villages. We show how much less money the counties are receiving under the current 2-year state budget (for 2012 and 2013) compared to the two years under the prior state budget (which was for 2010 and 2011). Here the funds are shown on a calendar year basis because that is how the tax department forecasts and records their distribution to local governments, and it is how local governments budget. (The state budget is on a fiscal year basis, from July 1 to June 30). Loss in revenue also includes change in funding of the Local Government Fund’s “Municipal Direct” allocation that the state gives directly to municipalities with an income tax, and property tax reimbursements promised to local governments during tax reductions enacted earlier in the decade. The figures for changes in funding levels are based on data provided by and spreadsheets online at the Ohio Department of Taxation for local government funds and tax reimbursement distributions.