The nuances of municipal law can negatively impact the public when handled carelessly. The public has a right to know when taxes will increase, what triggered the increase and which steps their city plans to take next.
While city officials may always encounter some pushback regarding tax updates, transparency can mitigate a great deal of discord.
Allowing a vote
Municipalities might cite a number of reasons for an increase in property taxes. This could include home values, local amenities and developments in public parks and schools. According to the Ohio Department of Taxation, property taxes are the state’s oldest tax. Since 1825, this value-based tax is something every Ohioan pays.
Prior to significant upgrades to municipal assets that would significantly impact residents’ property taxes, local lawmakers should allow the public to vote. Some people have valid reasons for not supporting developments that will increase their taxes and they should have a chance to express their opinion.
Informing the public
Updates to how much people pay on their property taxes should precede any increase. Municipal leaders should promptly inform the public of a tax increase and provide a context where needed. According to CNBC, people have the right to file an appeal if they have concerns about the accuracy of their tax amount.
People also have the right to request a property tax exemption if they meet eligibility requirements. Cities that neglect to actively involve and inform their residents before adjusting tax costs could face severe backlash. A commitment to transparency can reduce the risks of legal trouble.