Friday, May 23, 2008

No! No! A Thousand Seven Times No!

Like a zombie that just refuses to stay dead, the Pataskala income tax issue is coming back this November for a seventh time:

The Pataskala City Council on Monday placed an income-tax issue on the November general election ballot.

The move marked a reversal of sorts for the council, which had spent weeks debating whether to place an income tax on the August special election ballot. The council even voted twice -- once in late April and once in early May -- to place a 2-percent income tax with a 1-percent credit on the August special election ballot. Both votes ended in deadlocks, so the issue did not make it on the ballot.

No deadlocks occurred Monday.

The council voted 5-1 to place the same 2-percent income tax with a 1-percent credit on the November ballot.

The good news, if there is any, is that it took two months to get the issue on the ballot, and it will be on the general-election ballot, not a special August election. With the interest in the Presidential election, lots of voters will get a chance to weigh in on this tax issue -- an August special election wouldn't attract the same turnout.

As a reminder, here are the previous six failures for this issue:

November 2001 (Pataskala - 1.00% income tax): Against: 71.02% For: 28.98%
November 2002 (Pataskala - 0.75% income tax): Against: 68.61% For: 38.39%
November 2004 (Pataskala - 1.25% income tax, ??? credit): Against: 66.46% For: 33.54%
May 2006 (Pataskala - 1.50% income tax, ??? credit): Against: 58.95% For: 41.05%
November 2006 (1.50% tax, 100% credit): Against: 62.43% For: 37.57%
November 2007 (0.50% tax, no credit): Against: 57.59% For: 42.41%

At 2% / 1% credit, this is the highest proposal yet.

I suggested earlier that this issue would be easier to pass if the Pataskala City Council would simultaneously renounce their ability to collect property tax. I see they chose not to do that.

More analysis later ...

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