Mahoning County

November 5, 2012
   
State Overview
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Impact of the 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 Mahoning County?

The state cut the Local Government Fund to the county, forcing Mahoning 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………………………. -$592.0 thousand
  • Schools……………………………………. -$28.5 million
  • County operations………………………… -$8.8 million                 (includes LGF for townships and parks)
  • Boardman Township…………………….  -$1.3 million
  • Youngstown City………………………..  -$2.4 million
  • Mill Creek Metro Park…………………… -$743.0 thousand
  • Western Reserve Transit District………. -$570.0 thousand

Loss to health and human service levies

  • County mental health/Developmental disabilities……… -$2.1 million
  • County Child Services…………………………………….. -$683.0 thousand

Notes and Quotes

“So many people don’t fully understand the sacrifices teachers make every day to provide our children with the best education, and many times at their own expense. We hope to change that, by providing the materials classrooms desperately need but schools no longer provide and teachers can’t afford.” – Bernard Repasky, executive director, Help a Teacher Teach (Mahoning County). From Repasky, Bernard, Help a Teacher Teach, http://bit.ly/MZJAOr.

“Getting these [fire department levies] approved will more than likely bring us out of using general fund money. That will free up [general fund] money for other township needs.” – Andy Frost Jr., Austintown Township fire chief July 24, 2012.

“It takes 114 jail staff to run that housing unit, to run the booking. We’re doing it with 91. That’s 23 people less.” — Alki Santamas, Mahoning County Sheriff’s Department major.  From “County, City Officials Discuss Arraignment Plan,” WKBN 27 First News, January 19, 2012, http://bit.ly/PdY3us.

Boardman school levy “…will be used to fund instructional and operational services at seven [school] buildings, the bus garage and the maintenance building,” says Rich Santilli, Boardman school district treasurer. From Skolnick, Elise McKeown “Board finalizes resolution on levy,” Vindy.com, July 24, 2012, http://bit.ly/MZPCP1.

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 based on the fiscal year, July 1 through June 30);
  • Local Government “Municipal Direct” allocation from the Local Government Fund that the state gives directly to localities.  This is also shown in terms of funding provided in the calendar years 2012 and 2013 compared to 2010 and 2011;
  • Property tax reimbursements promised to local governments during tax reductions enacted earlier in the decade.  The loss of funding in calendar years 2012 and 2013 is compared to the level of funding provided in 2010 and 2011.

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.

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