Columbus Tax Increase Prevails

Overcoming a sour economy and accusations of fiscal mismanagement, Columbus City officials and supporters are celebrating passage of the city’s first income tax increase in 27 years.

With all of the precincts reporting the “Yes” votes for Issue #1 garnered 52% of the ballots cast, beating the “No” votes by some 3,000 votes.

The passage of Issue #1 means Columbus income tax payers will see their taxes increase on October 1st. City leaders say the increase will result in up to $100 million in additional revenue next year, erasing most of a projected $115 million deficit.

Officials have said passage of the tax increase would prevent the layoffs of hundreds of city employees including nearly 300 police officers and nearly 250 fire fighters.

The vote is a defeat for opponents who charged the city had not done enough to cut expenses and needlessly spent its rainy day fund over the past 8 years.