Proposed legislation heats up council chambers

Tayler Thompson

Herald Staff Writer

Big changes could be on the horizon for Barberton residents who work outside of the Magic City.

In efforts to bring in revenue, Mayor William Judge has proposed a 50% reduction of income tax credit for those who work outside of the city. The legislation was introduced without a draft during the Nov. 25 finance meeting where council members called for the legislation and requested three readings, which would require a special meeting to be scheduled Monday, Dec. 30.

If this piece of legislation passes, residents who work outside of the city would have to pay an additional 1.125% in income tax to Barberton. For example, if you work in Akron earning $30,000 annually, you would still pay Akron $750 in income tax (at their tax rate of 2.5%) and an additional $337.50 to Barberton.

Councilwoman Shannon Wokojance asked Judge, “Have you considered maybe not jumping to a 50% match, maybe more like 70%, something that isn’t so extreme?” Judge explained that the 50% makes up for the income tax loss expected from losing Babcock & Wilcox (B&W), who are still operating in the city despite their claims to leave in October. He said, “You could do a different percentage but you still may have to make cuts.”

A citizen from the gallery questioned how many people this would affect and Finance Director Jeremy Flaker explained the CCA only provided him the amount of money it would generate (estimating $1.3 million annually). Wokojance requested that Flaker contact CCA again to try to obtain this information. Councilwoman At-Large Carla Debevec stated that the city is $1.7 million above the estimated collections for the year and said, “That would cover the loss of B&W for next year. Am I looking at that incorrectly or am I missing something?” Flaker says this is true, but he followed up by asking, “What happens in 2021?”

Judge stated, “The other alternatives would be to go to the voters for an income tax increase or property assessment. And you think about people who are retired and on a fixed income. It doesn’t make it easy but it makes sense.” He has also urged council members to voice their ideas to help recover financially from the impending loss of B&W.

Debevec stated, “In all fairness it doesn’t affect those who are retired or work in the city but just because you do work doesn’t mean you aren’t on a fixed income or have a fixed budget.” She also said she would like to know the tax rates, how many residents would be affected and how many other communities do this. “I feel like all of that information should have been provided for us to look at.”

76 Comments

  1. triska demarco on November 30, 2019 at 11:51 pm

    That’s not Fair to take it out on folks who work outside of town, if Barberton offered good Jobs, maybe they would be working in the City. You are just going to drive more people away, more empty houses. Find another way! Raise funds the right way, Trim the Fat, and entice more Businesses to move here and Generate Tax Revenue. and Sell some of the Buildings off, like that Johnson School etc. use your Head, Don’t take it out on the Citizens.

  2. Joe W on November 30, 2019 at 11:48 am

    Worked at B&W for over a decade. B&W was the only reason I bought a house in Barberton. When I got laid off it took me 2 months to find a decent paying job outside of Barberton. There are no good paying jobs anywhere in Barberton and most of the housing is below average condition. If this passes I wanna move out.

    Make those cuts to the fire department Billy Boy! Living here is not worth 3.375% of my income.

  3. Big Chuck on November 30, 2019 at 6:08 am

    What a political genius we have in Bill Judge. Open taxpayer checkbook is his answer to all financial problems. Wake up William, you need to apply yourself and ASK FOR HELP. You have no clue on financial matters and the creation of jobs and revenue. SEEK HELP AND EDUCATE YOURSELF. Set ego aside and do whats best for the city. If a short term tax is the answer then make it a small flat tax across the board. Better yet, how about a tax for the non homeowners ? What are rental folks contributing to city coffers? Your small hard working homeowner tax paying base is
    taxed out.

  4. NON COMPREHENDERUNT on November 30, 2019 at 5:04 am

    It is difficult to be supportive of this tax increase when we hear our city officials, beset with revenue shortfalls, talking about building a multi-million dollar “Criminal Justice Center” and see the city being taken to the cleaners by crooked firemen and their over indulgence in the overtime area. Still, it is equally difficult to see residents who pay taxes to other cities crying “foul” when they are asked to pay their fair share of taxes to support the city in which they live. The only prudent response to this is to have it put upon the ballot and let the majority decide. I might add that when faced with this issue voter turnout should be strong. Let’s also remember that there is no room to complain if the city is short on funds and has to cut services. You can’t have your cake and eat it too. Wonder of Judge would have been re-elected had he exposed this plan prior to the primary election or if the school levy would have passed? I think not. Remember, “SEMPER UBI SUB UBI”! Peace

    • double taxed on November 30, 2019 at 7:28 am

      Residents who work outside the city would be taxed MORE than the rest. get it now? You’re using the word fair without realizing its definition.

    • Anonymous 1 on November 30, 2019 at 12:22 pm

      I think people already pay their share fair of taxes to Barberton. So you can cry foul on this issue. Not the residents fault B&W left town.

  5. Barberton Charter on November 29, 2019 at 11:21 pm

    Section 8.03 requires 20% of the total ballots cast in the previous Municipal election

  6. RECALL THE MAYOR on November 29, 2019 at 8:42 am

    oh no!! a good point!! send in the shills!! corrupt,corrupt,corrupt . Documented

  7. edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:52 am

    COACH = DEMOCRAT SHILL. NOTHING MORE NOTHING LESS. COWARD 100%

  8. Coach on November 28, 2019 at 8:41 pm

    Peasants and tenants

    • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:05 am

      Ohio revised code 5705.92 start a petition and recall the mayor. Signature requirement is 15% of the total votes cast in the last regular municipal election… COACH you have 0 room to talk. “IM A REGISTERED REPUBLICAN” and a fraud with a tiny schmekle obviously! KEEP ERASINGTHE PEOPLES FIRST AMMENDMENT RIGHTS!! ” SCREENSHOT”

      • Coach on November 29, 2019 at 7:26 am

        Ed dont be a nigger its blacks Friday man

        • The Harold on December 3, 2019 at 7:29 am

          We encourage racism! ☝️ WIGGER PLEASE!!!

      • B-Town Going Postal on November 29, 2019 at 8:09 am

        Based on the voter turnout, that should only require about 300 signatures.

        • RECALL THE MAYOR on November 29, 2019 at 8:20 am

          yup. exactly why they keep removing the comment

    • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 8:55 am

      Coach do you prefer a side of soy with your baby! Or just baby straight up?

  9. Coach on November 28, 2019 at 8:40 pm

    Lowlifes. Pay up!!

    • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:12 am

      LIFES? LMAO

  10. double taxed on November 28, 2019 at 7:30 am

    this article alone made ALL of Barbertons home values drop instantly. Thank your ever-thinking mayor…

  11. double taxed on November 28, 2019 at 6:50 am

    1.3 million annually is just enough to cover their raises!

  12. edbassmaster on November 27, 2019 at 7:37 pm

    HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE!!! 🖕

  13. edbassmaster on November 27, 2019 at 4:38 pm

    lol!!

  14. Steve Despot on November 27, 2019 at 9:44 am

    A good friend informed me that some anonymous “asshat” is dropping my name on here. Not sure why you assume what you assume. If you have a problem, bring it! Don’t be a coward and hide under an anonymous name.

    You obviously must know who I am somehow or another. My guess is that I must have schooled you at some point in time and you have not gotten over being sore.

    If anyone else posts using MY name, it is FAKE because this is the one and ONLY time I will address this here. Any other attempts at using my name will be met with a lawsuit.

    I only warn once. Enough said!

    • Coach on November 28, 2019 at 8:37 pm

      Steve you coward.

    • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:15 am

      what was your maiden name before taking your old lady’s last name?

  15. Kalynne on November 27, 2019 at 9:09 am

    I’m a new resident of Barberton that works in another area. Now I feel as if i made a huge mistake and should have looked at Norton instead. Hope this doesn’t happen because I will be moving out as fast as I moved in.

  16. Anonymous on November 27, 2019 at 8:50 am

    So the residents are getting penalized for finding better employment elsewhere? What is left in Barberton for employment opportunities, for full time? The only thing left is machine shops, retail and food service. The two latter are generally part time, no benefits. The mayor shouldn’t be surprised when people start selling their homes. Might as well move to the city you currently work in.

    • Andy on November 30, 2019 at 8:20 am

      I work in a factory it’s an honest living nothing to be ashamed of. I used to work in barberton theres nothing left here except low paying minimum wage jobs. Where are we supposed to work bill judge has ran all the decent jobs out

  17. Andrew W on November 27, 2019 at 8:30 am

    Sounds like an easy way to lose more income tax money for all the people who rent and work in Akron will just get up and move, I work one mile outside of barberton and will have no problem when I go to buy a house it being in Norton.

  18. Census on November 27, 2019 at 6:26 am

    While they’re doing all this calculating, what is the ratio of the working class to the government funded in this city? Section 8 housing and government supported family’s don’t give one thought about tax increases or school levies. If it don’t affect you, you don’t care! It is better to be a taker than a giver in Barberton, of course the takers bilking city overtime, won’t have to worry about a tax increase on their overtime, so called sick days. So maybe I should just chill out in the art district, have a latte and look at Prius ads, and those high paying jobs….. in the city of course!

    • Brian on November 27, 2019 at 7:56 am

      Let’s just flat tax everyone…problem solved

  19. Judge"theman" on November 27, 2019 at 4:37 am

    CHEAPSKATES! You should be happy that our Mayor is on the job and has found a solution to our income as a city. It takes real guts for Judge to propose this except it must be noted that he is sure of 4 more years at this point and may care little if he is opposed or not. As Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren point out…more taxes are necessary to pay for the blessings we need (except now Judge is not talking about taking 2 cents from billionaires as they do). Anyway folks, ya gotta pay to play. We all want our world class roads, top notch police protection and great firefighters, don’t we? That don’t come cheap so GIVE TILL IT HURTS!!!!!

    • Sure he is on November 27, 2019 at 5:18 am

      If you like a mayor who has wasted tax payers money, haven’t followed rules or Charters then good for you. You can piss money away and then go back to the citizens for more donations, so he can have his justice center, sad. That’s why u moved out of town, take your mayor w you. Look at the books and you will see the money wasted. Thanks, pay to play has killed Barberton.

      • Iconoclast on November 28, 2019 at 4:39 am

        Should have voted for the GREEN HORNET when you had the chance!!!!!

    • Dave on November 27, 2019 at 10:12 am

      ….said no one ever….except you. Your ignorance is staggering

      • Iconoclast on November 28, 2019 at 4:36 am

        Hold on here. We DO all want the fine roads provided by Mayor Judge as well as the well compensated Fire Department and top notch law enforcement, right? Well, if you work outside Barberton you are paying taxes to another city and thus mooching off poor Mayor Judge and taking advantage of the rest of us who must pay for you to play! Right? All the Mayor is asking, in my humble opinion, is that all equally share the burden of covering the city’s expenses. The request is totally legitimate.

        • concern barberton voter on November 28, 2019 at 9:05 am

          once again a judge support. no brains i think we should make him part times cut the pay and see if he leaves

        • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:18 am

          Ohio revised code 5705.92. Signature requirement is 15% of the total votes cast in the last regular municipal election. Start the petition. We’ll get the signatures no problem!

        • Sure he is on November 29, 2019 at 11:24 am

          Way to support your brother, who has ran the city in the ground. At one point you have to tell your brother o stop wasting the tax payers money

    • edbassmaster on November 27, 2019 at 4:41 pm

      lol!!!

  20. Joanne Moore on November 27, 2019 at 4:09 am

    The asshat stated about the $5 tax hike that it was a rule and we have to follow the rules. The businesses that left town was told that they couldn’t break the rules for them, so they left town. Thanks asshat, but it’s ok for the city to break rules, following the rules like u stated, Barberton’s charter states all department Heads should live in the city, they don’t. Barbertons charter says u need to have certain qualifications to be head of the utilities and he isn’t even close to the qualifications. Barbertons charter says we should have a city Engineer and we haven’t since Billy boy has been in office, but look at all the money he has gave to engineer firms and all the money they gave the mayor. Look at the building inspector. Don’t have one. Wake up Barberton

  21. Referee on November 26, 2019 at 11:49 pm

    This is the most asinine idea yet! I would like a count of any and all CITY, MUNICIPAL, & SCHOOL employees that work in the city BUT live elsewhere. Maybe this proposal should be flipped? My daughter works in another county & has to pay the difference all ready.

  22. Kim on November 26, 2019 at 8:44 pm

    The mayor has run this town into the ground. There are no jobs here that you can raise a family. If this passes I will sell my homes and get the hell out of Barberton

  23. Sandra Hendrickson on November 26, 2019 at 8:21 pm

    This is ridiculous! You want to make citizens who work outside of the city of Barberton pay higher taxes to make up for B&W’s loss of tax revenue? I’ve got one better. How about if this passes, I move to Wadsworth? A city that knows how to manage their revenue income.

    • Coach on November 26, 2019 at 8:31 pm

      Sarah that sounds good on its face, but if your a homeowner. You’ll never be able to sell your home… do you know anyone else to commit to a 30 year mortgage for the privilege of living in the magic city? It is magic though… tax dollars and jobs dissapear as if harry Houdini was here!!!

  24. Kimberly Trenary on November 26, 2019 at 8:07 pm

    The only way for to get your message across is to go.to council meetings,voice your opinion make it known on public record your feeling on this. Call your current council member and voice your opinion,call the mayor voice your opinion,send emails to the mayor and your council person. MAKE YOUR VOICE KNOWN, SPEAK UP AT MEETINGS,I KNOW IWILL BE USING MINE VERY LOUD AND CLEAR.
    REMEMBER IF YOU DON’T GO AND USE YOUR VOICE THEN YOU CAN NOT AND SHOULD NOT COMPLAIN.

    • Anonymous 1 on November 27, 2019 at 2:55 am

      It will take someone to organize a movement, and get the residence of Barberton to fill the gallery at city hall this next council meeting.

  25. Kim Miller on November 26, 2019 at 6:35 pm

    Just because you loss company’s does not mean the citizens who live in Barberton and work outside should pay more there are very few good paying jobs in Barberton.

  26. Lynette on November 26, 2019 at 6:13 pm

    Maybe you should take some responsibility for the businesses leaving Barberton and work harder to get some in rather than taxing the citizens who are already taxed to the MAX!?!🧐🤔

  27. Coach on November 26, 2019 at 6:12 pm

    I have no sympathy to those of you who re elected judge. You knew or should have known what you were doing. his track record of job loss and mismanagement spoke for itself. Even the fact that you’re poorly educated and needed a free ride to the polls is no excuse… make it 100% repeal… the junkies will keep needed their narcan. Even though you have blamed the doctors and people legitimate need for pain killers on the junkies heroin. You dont say the same about the cleark who sells a drunk a thirty pack then runs over a family. Shame on you all!

    • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:46 am

      I have no sympathy for those of you who stood idle and did nothing more than flap your gums. Coward. Jab at me from miles away but face to face you haven’t got nothing to say! Go soil your fist again!

  28. Anonymous on November 26, 2019 at 5:45 pm

    What a joke!

  29. Coach on November 26, 2019 at 4:53 pm

    I warned you peasants to vote for ANYONE but judge. Lololol

  30. Phil Henderson on November 26, 2019 at 4:28 pm

    This is why I moved out of Barberton. You tax the hard working citizens yet refuse to let other businesses move in to the city. I was born in Barberton and have watched as bad decision making has destroyed the economy.
    How about being proactive and looking for more business to invite to move in. Also getting rid of section 8 housing, who’s tenants are dragging the looks and safety of 5he city down.

  31. Leann on November 26, 2019 at 4:25 pm

    Good bye Barberton. This city is not worth all that.

  32. Denise August on November 26, 2019 at 4:01 pm

    This is the dumbest thing ever.
    I’m gonna be penalized because there are not good jobs in Barberton and I have to go to Akorn to work.
    How many people will just move out of Barberton now.
    How about tax the people that dont live here but work here. That sounds better.

  33. Coach on November 26, 2019 at 3:54 pm

    I warned you****

    • edbassmaster on November 27, 2019 at 4:42 pm

      lol!!!

  34. Coach on November 26, 2019 at 3:53 pm

    Hey dummies!!!! You voted this p.o.s. back !!! I wanted you this was gonna happen!!!!

    LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!

    • Anonymous on November 27, 2019 at 10:20 am

      You aren’t helping, with your immature comments!

    • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:58 am

      freudian slip coach? wanted?

  35. Anonymous on November 26, 2019 at 3:51 pm

    We all cant work in the city !!!! Wth we have to live ….tax tax tax and we are punished for working and wanting to raise our families here in the city…. its total bullshit

  36. shaunna on November 26, 2019 at 3:31 pm

    This is insane, why should residents of barberton be punished because a company pulled out, so whats next year, another increase to make up for kmart? there aren’t even jobs in barberton to back this up if we wanted to stay in the community to work.
    I work in hudson and already have to pay barberton…. shame on you for punishing your residents.

  37. Anonymous on November 26, 2019 at 3:19 pm

    So I guess I’ll be moving out if barberton then

  38. minnie the mooch on November 26, 2019 at 3:12 pm

    what a crock of shit!

  39. Danielle Dague on November 26, 2019 at 3:10 pm

    So real soon we will be paying more than we earn in our GREAT city. Tax this; tax that!, Licence plate renewal. Where will they stop? When we have to leave this city? Then what will you tax? The air? Toll gate to get it? When does it STOP?!?!

  40. Demo Losers on November 26, 2019 at 2:26 pm

    This will cost me almost 600 more a year.

    • Steve Despot is a Nut on November 26, 2019 at 3:53 pm

      Wahhh

      • Demo Losers on November 27, 2019 at 9:25 am

        Huh? I don’ t get it. Is he on council?

    • edbassmaster on November 29, 2019 at 7:21 am

      recall the mayor! Ohio revised code 5705.92. start a petition and you will gain the signatures needed no problem!

  41. Guy Fawkes on November 26, 2019 at 2:17 pm

    Typical Democratic way-spend, spend, spend and make someone else pay for it instead of tightening their belts, making cuts or anything else to try to save money.

    • Patti laughman on November 26, 2019 at 5:19 pm

      Total bullshit we already have fees on our barberton utilities! (For lighting our “beautiful city ” shit i can barely pay my own light bill!!! But they give us no choice in that matter either this town is going to HELL

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