Northwest schools in the Canal Fulton/Clinton/New Franklin area has failed 10 times at the ballot. On the recommendation of an independent financial committee, it will try to pass a 1-percent earned income tax in the May primary. I write in today's Akron Beacon Journal about the efforts of Northwest, Stow-Munroe Falls and Springfield school districts to better engage their residents in tough decisions about raising taxes and making cuts. BTW, today is Northwest Community Pride Day with activities at the district bus garage (former Ford dealership at 2309 Locust Street South in Canal Fulton) from 1 to 3 pm) and student performances at Puffenberger Hall at Northwest High School from 3:30 to 5 pm. More information about school district income taxes after the jump.
School district income taxes are rare in this area. Medina County's Cloverleaf district and Wayne County's Chippewa district both have school district earned income taxes. Two Wayne County districts (Dalton and Northwestern) have straight up school district income taxes, which are calculated differently than earned income taxes. This booklet and this brochure from the Ohio Department of Taxation explains the difference. Akron voters agreed to raise their city income taxes to pay for new school buildings, but it's still a municipal income tax, which works differently than a school district earned income tax. For example, people who work in Akron but live elsewhere are paying for the construction of Akron schools. A school district earned income tax applies only to residents of the school district. If it passes, residents will fill out a new income tax form specifically for the school district in addition to city, state and federal income tax forms.