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SB 297 (Seitz) Township Bill
To require township consent for certain economic development-motivated property tax exemptions in annexed but undetached township territory, to shield some township levies from such exemption, to specify that political subdivisions owning property in unincorporated territory are counted for the purpose of determining whether the requisite number of owners have petitioned for annexation of that territory, to permit local authorities to hold closed meetings to discuss details and terms of pending economic development assistance, to expressly require applicants for Power Siting Board approval of major new utility facilities to notify affected townships of the application, and to shorten the time allowed for remediation of certain nuisances before abatement action can be taken by a township. 
Senator Seitz has introduced a piece of legislation that addresses several of the OTA's legislative priorities for the 128th General Assembly.  Please find attached the summary of the bill prepared by his office with our assistance.
You are strongly encouraged to contact your state senator to express your support of the bill.  Find an issue or two in the bill and explain how this legislation could assist you.  should you have any questions about the bill, please do not hesitate to contact the office.
Federal Health Care Issue Affecting Townships

Section 9006 of the health care bill (the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148)) requires all businesses, charities, associations, and state and local governments to file 1099 forms if they purchase $600 or more in goods from individuals or corporations during a calendar year. This includes everything from office supplies and shipping costs to phone and internet services. In addition, staff would also have to keep track of multiple payments and obtain the personal tax identification information of each vendor that they conduct business with. Such requirements would pose a major administrative burden on towns and townships, many of which have limited staff capacity to manage the required paperwork and compliance obligations.


These requirements are effective for purchases made in 2012 that will be reported on 1099 forms filed in 2013. Currently, 1099s are only used to document income for individual contract workers and are not used for corporations or for purchasing goods.  Section 9006 was intended to be a fundraiser for the rest of the health care bill; the Congressional Budget Office projects it will deliver $17 billion over the course of 10 years by reducing business tax evasion.  However, a July 2010 report issued by the Office of the Taxpayer Advocate states that “the new reporting burden, particularly as it falls on small businesses, may turn out to be disproportionate as compared with any resulting improvement in tax compliance.”


NATaT and the OTA urges Congress to repeal Section 9006 of the health care bill and remove businesses, charities, associations, and state and local governments from these unnecessary reporting requirements.


You are strongly encouraged to call your congressional member and Senators Voinovich and Brown to urge their support of repealing this section.


Groups Urging Reform of Local Governments

Last week, the Columbus Metropolitan Club held a discussion on the topic of the state budget and ways to help the state cut revenue.  The discussion centered on the theme of local government consolidation.  Representatives from the Ohio Society of CPAs, Center for Community Solutions and Greater Ohio offered suggestions on patching the budget shortfall by reducing redundancy in local government as a necessary measure to ease the state's long-term budget woes.  Specifically, comments were made regarding the number of local government jurisdictions in the state, the service delivery areas and the duties performed by each entity.


One presenter suggested that the state could withhold about half of the $1 billion Local Government Fund to use as grants for entities that share operations and reduce spending.  Another suggested the state create a local government commission to recommend farreaching changes to school districts and local entities.  Yet another quoted recent polls that indicate public support for reducing government services.  The speakers said an equitable solution would require a departure from the usual practice of each constituency fighting to protect its own interests.


Here are links to reports from each organization that was present. 





You are encouraged to visit the websites and read the materials.  Please be aware that this issue will likely come up in the 129th General Assembly and we all definitely need to be alert to these issues over the next 7-8 months.

Zoning Sessions
October 1, October 8 & October 15
There are still plenty of spaces available for the zoning sessions being offered by the State Association every Friday from now until October 15.  The workshops will begin at 9:30 and conclude around 3:00 pm.  Lunch is included with the registration fee.
For details about each session being offered and a registration form, please see the attached 2 page document.
Attention Carroll, Columbiana, Mahoning, Jefferson, Portage, Stark, Summit and Tuscarawas Counties
Oil & Gas Meeting (See Attached Notice)

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) and County Records Offices report a DELUGE of landsmen trying to quickly sign up landowners to long-term oil and gas drilling leases.  There have been numerous reports of these folks using all types of pressure tactics and dubious facts.  From May - July in Columbiana County alone, 208 leases were recorded, whereas the prior three months only 18 had been recorded.


The decision to lease can make or break the livelihoods of these landowners and farmers. They must become educated about all the pros and cons and how to obtain a competent attorney.


This information was submitted to us by Vanessa Pesec of NEOGAP - Ohio (www.neogap.org).



Heidi M. Fought
Director of Governmental Affairs
Ohio Township Association
6500 Taylor Road, Suite A
Blacklick, OH 43004
(614) 863-0045
(614) 863-9751 Fax