Here is the link to the video from the first trustee meeting of 2015. This is the only meeting in January, there will not be a work session meeting this month.
This morning there was a work session / annual reorganization meeting. Trustee Gwen McFarlin was elected as chairman of the board of trustees for 2015 and appropriations for 2015 were approved. In addition to that, a resolution was passed approving employee salaries for 2015. We are working on a public records request to get a list of the updated employee salaries… Here’s the video from the meeting.
Springfield Township has released the grant forms for residents who paid into the JEDZ to apply for the CIC residential incentive grant. In order to qualify for the grant as an individual you must work and live in Springfield Township. To apply for the grant as a business owner, your business must be at least 50% owned by a Springfield Township resident. The deadline for filing an application is April 15, unless you file an extension (Form 20) with RITA and submit that form along with your grant application. This extends the deadline for the business net profit grant to October 15.
Here is the link to the information on Springfield Twp’s website.
After the CIC meeting Wednesday morning I raised some concerns with Trustee Mark Berning as well as Assistant Administrator Chris Gilbert about the filing deadlines for the CIC incentive grant. This afternoon I received a call back from Chris and he informed me that they have decided to change the policy to allow for an extension of the deadline when an extension (Form 20) has been filed with RITA.
If we’re going to be critical of our government officials when we feel they are doing it wrong, I think it’s also important to give them props when they are doing it right.
Well done Springfield Twp, and thanks for taking our suggestions into consideration.
The forms are being revised and they will be made available to us when that process has been completed. As soon as we receive the forms we will make them available here.
There were two meetings this week that we attended for the JEDZ board and the CIC board.
The JEDZ board meeting took place at 10am on Tuesday, December 16. Here is the link to the video. This meeting was pretty uneventful, although it came out during the meeting that there are many businesses who are not yet registered with RITA and not withholding the JEDZ tax. They did mention that the township’s largest employers are set up and paying and they discussed some ways to reach out to the non-compliant businesses to get them compliant.
The CIC board, which is the entity that will be providing the grants back to residents who work in the township or own a business in the township met this morning at 8am. Here is a link to that video. In this meeting they voted to finalize the forms needed to apply for the grant and they established the deadline for filing for the grant. That deadline is April 15 for both individuals and businesses.
While it’s fairly simple for individuals to apply for the grant with their W2, many businesses file extensions and do not have their taxes filed until September or October depending on what type of entity they are. You can file an extension with RITA, the agency who collects the taxes, just like you can with your Federal and State Income Tax. However, while the IRS requires a 90% estimated payment, RITA only requires 25% and the rest when you file. If you only pay 25% at the time of filing the extension and before April 15, you would only be able to apply for a grant in the amount you pay. When the other 75% is paid, it would be past the deadline and therefore not eligible for the grant.
There has been some discussion with trustee Mark Berning after the meeting, because he raised this concern during the meeting. He said he would look into it further but does not feel they would be able to extend the deadline to October, even though it is the CIC board that sets the deadline. He was also asked if the remaining amount could be applied for the following year since it would be paid after the deadline and he didn’t think that would be possible. We are working on reaching out to some other folks to make them aware of this because most businesses do file extensions. While you can estimate what is owed and pay that amount, the numbers are always different when the finalized version is filed and this adds some complexity to an already complex issue.
Since this is the first year of the tax and it took effect on August 1st, businesses already have to figure out the first half of the year separate from the second half of the year in order to determine their tax liability from August 1 through December 31. Due to the complexity of this situation, businesses that normally do not file an extension may need to file one this time. Our hope is that the CIC will be flexible and adjust their deadlines accordingly. We understand that they want to set it up to be as simple as possible, the problem is that it’s not simple for the businesses, and we feel that the township needs to share in that burden.
We will have the finalized version of the grant forms soon. When we receive our copy they will be posted here for folks to download.
Here is the video from tonight’s trustee meeting. It was pretty short and sweet, although I did get up and ask about the township putting their checkbook online through the initiative that the state treasurer’s office is working on with www.ohiocheckbook.com. I don’t think they liked me asking the question, however trustee Mark Berning did state that it is something they will look into. We will be sure to follow up on this in the coming months.
We requested a copy of the temporary appropriations that were referenced in last night’s special meeting and received it this morning. Here is a link to the document.
Chris Gilbert, the assistant administrator added the following disclaimer:
“As you know, this is a draft and is subject to change prior to the Board’s adoption anticipated to be on December 23rd. Changes may be needed due to final carryover calculations from 2014 year-end closeout and any unforeseen issues that may arise between now and then. Additionally, this is the temporary appropriations to be able to start the new year and the final appropriations for 2015 will be adopted in March. Lastly, as we’ve discussed in the past, we generally never spend everything that is appropriated. It’s simply a placeholder that enables the expenditure of funds by the Board, but doesn’t necessarily mean that they will be spent. “
Here is the video from last night’s temporary appropriations special meeting. We haven’t gone through it with a fine tooth comb yet, but it sounds like the budget will be very similar to last year’s… We will be putting in a public records request for a copy of the proposed appropriations and we will post that here when we get it.
The regular trustee work session meeting scheduled for this evening at 4:30pm has been canceled. There are several regular meetings, a special meeting and a CIC meeting scheduled in December:
Monday, December 8 @ 4:30pm – Special meeting to discuss temporary appropriations for 2015
Tuesday, December 9 @ 5:30pm – Regular trustee meeting
Wednesday, December 17 @ 8:00am – Regular CIC meeting
Tuesday, December 23 @ 4:30pm – Regular work session meeting
Immediately after the regular work session meeting on December 23 there will be an organizational meeting to discuss times/dates for future meetings and to nominate the chairman and vice-chairman of the board for 2015. They will also pass the resolutions necessary to approve temporary appropriations for 2015.
Please come to these meetings if you can. It is necessary for the citizens to get involved in their local government so that we can hold our elected officials accountable.
Here is the link to tonight’s township trustee meeting. It’s official, we have added a third double dipping government employee. In addition to that, there’s some good back and forth about the JEDZ during the “citizen participation” segment at the end…