Tax abuse?

May 20, 2014


Could the fire department abuse the admission tax revenue?
A tax increase by any name is still moving the money around. It doesn’t matter if it is an increase in income tax, admission tax, or a levy added onto the property tax. No matter what kind of increase is 
chosen, an increase will take the burden off the city’s general fund freeing up more money that the city can burn through relocating City Hall. 
The admissions tax looks promising because it is not coming out of the pockets of the taxpayers. A group has come forward to take up a petition to increase a long overdue admission tax. The 
committee’s goal is to fund city services including fixing the roads, maintaining three fire stations, and removing dead trees. Will there be a percentage of money allotted to each of the three project items, 
or will it be up to the commissioners’ discretion as to how the money will be spent among the three categories? 
As for the street part of the admission tax, the city already has such a street fund, but salaries and benefits burned through most of the money leaving money for only patching to be done. Will the fire 
department’s raises and benefits over power the admission tax revenue that it squeezes out the money for trees and streets? 
Fire station No. 3 is in need of major repairs and possibly a new station. The money could possibly come out of the admission tax. I could easily see the new revenue being abused by the fire department just like what happened to the street fund. 
Unless the percentage of money is divided equally in the language of the petition, how can the citizens expect a fair distribution among the three projects? The commissioners could pave one road and still 
fulfill the obligation of the petition language. The fire department might get 80 percent of funding and 10 percent left each for the streets and tree removal.
Another concern is that the admissions tax would show partiality over the fire department versus the police department, which needs funding also. The pros and cons are going to have to be weighed 
before any taxpayer approves of any increase in taxes. Possibly doubling the admission tax seems like a lot of money to expend without proper planning.



Don't you elect the commissioners with the idea that they will allocate the money correctly? By the way, what ax are you grinding against the fire department?


The City will have a very skilled City Manager in place and I would expect he will want to meet with Admissions Tax proponents to address concerns. He hopefully will propose appropriate uses of additional Admissions Tax revenues in the best interests of the community and the Commission and city employees need to allow him to manage.

JT Adams St

I don't see maintaining Fire Station No. 7 as an abuse of the admissions tax by the Fire Department. While the focus of the admissions tax effort is on maintaining Fire Station No. 7, that is the direct result of the city choosing to deny safety services to west side residents. If instead of closing Fire Station No. 7, the city had decided to stop having police officers respond to calls in all neighborhoods east of Columbus Avenue, the admissions tax committee would have a different focus.

Stop It

Anything east of Columbus? Yeah, let them kill each other off and take out Cedar Point too. Smells like Escape from New York. lol...

Steve P

So many ideas, so little experience in owning a business or public office... Five minutes was way to long...


bumpy roads, or not enough paramedic's / firefighter's. to come save our family.


Dear SHARON I THINK YOUR TIME IS UP!!!! Your information is not accurate, please in the future check your information before you post stuff. Station 3 is not in need of repairs and does not need replaced. STATION 7 DOES!! Congratulations on making yourself look stupid!!!!!!


Sandusky Register typo.

Comrade Boose

Sharon's Opinions Expressed Are NOT Those of Rebuild Sandusky.

The first meeting you brought this up to a member of the fire department about this being used to fund pay raise. I remember you were then given a quick class on collective bargaining and using comparable cities.

Pay raises for the following comparable cities that SERB uses for Sandusky:

Barberton 6% , Beachwod City 10.5%, Chillocothe 9%,Kettering 9.5%, Marion 6%, Mount Vernon 9%,Sandusky 4.5%, Solon 7.75%,Stow 9.75%, Upper Arlington 11.5%, WestLake 10.75%

The firefighters could have used this information to request a bigger raise and you were told they didn't because they wanted to work with the city to build the city not to take them for what they could get. If you do not recall this maybe the other dozen people that were there can remind you.

You have the ability to reach people on this blog use your powers for good for once.

For everyone else please check us out on


Any funds generated by an admissions tax increase should be doubly designated. By that, I mean not only must they be spent on certain things and those certain things ONLY, but they must also be considered INCREASES for those specific accounts!

I agree there's a very real possibility that the City will keep some budget line items right where they are now using the admissions tax proceeds, and just move the other (property tax, city income tax, etc.) money over into the "general" fund, or the "let's move City Hall" fund. But Rebuild Sandusky doesn't seem naive enough to fail to consider that, and they'll doubtless make that clear to the lawyer helping to craft the language of the petitions and ballot.

Sharon, meanwhile, is proving far more of a hindrance than a help with ANYthing! Sure, she points out some real problems on occasion. But no matter the solutions offered, she continues to complain. I've come to believe the woman's not happy unless she's miserable!

JT Adams St

If there were 10 people like Sharon fighting for their fire station on the west side, the city wouldn't have closed it. Sharon identifies problems. It's up to the rest of the community to decide whether they need to be addressed. Unfortunately, the rest of the community simply assumes that Mayor Murray has all of the answers. So far his answers seem to be: don't fix the roads, close Fire Station No. 7, and let homeowners pay to remove all of the dead trees that the city planted on the tree lawns.


It sounds like the petition group needs to tighten up the petition language and not leave any legal loop holes open for the elected officials to loop through or misinterpret the true intention of the petition. The group shouldn't trust or assume the elected officials will be fair about the division of money.