On Election Day, Powell residents voted down what would have been the city’s first income-tax increase in 27 years.
With all 159 Delaware County precincts reporting Nov. 6, the income-tax issue was defeated 3,845 to 2,639 votes, or 59 to 41 percent, according to final, unofficial results from the Delaware County Board of Elections.
The issue would have raised the city’s income tax from 0.75 percent to 1.15 percent while increasing the tax credit from 0.25 percent to 0.5 percent for residents who live in Powell but work in and pay income taxes to another municipality.
The plan was formulated largely by the city’s Citizen Financial Review Task Force, an 18-member group that over six months in 2018 put together a report regarding the best way to fund the city’s infrastructure needs.
The increase was projected to bring the city $20 million over 10 years and largely was meant to provide funds for repairs to roads, bike paths and sewage systems.
According to the city, a resident who lives and works in Powell earning $100,000 per year would have seen a $400 net increase in taxes annually if the issue is approved by voters. A Powell resident earning $100,000 who works outside the city and pays income tax to another municipality would have seen an increase of $150 annually.
Late Tuesday night, city spokeswoman Megan Canavan said Powell leaders’ focus is already on finding another solution to infrastructure concerns.
“If we determine that (the loss) is the result … the city is going to continue having discussions with our community on how to fund infrastructure maintenance in the city,” she said. “This increase was going to be 100 percent devoted to infrastructure maintenance, so we still need to identify ways to fund those capital needs in the city.”