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Councilman Robert Schleper, Jr. Resigns Position

To my colleagues here in the Village,

It is my bittersweet news to convey that I have been offered a position in Denver, Colorado this past week. As many of you are aware, finding a leadership position in education in Northeastern Ohio has been challenging to say the least. After making the decision to apply out of state, I was offered a position within twelve days off applying, within one of the top schools in Colorado.

As such, I will be resigning from Chagrin Falls Village Council effective August 1st, 2016. Serving in this capacity the past year has been a true honor, and I will always remember the level of engagement I have held within this community. Being in service to your community, no matter the capacity, is always an honorable and worthwhile endeavor, and connects us to the greater idea of being women and men for others.

I would like to take the opportunity to thank each of my colleagues on council, the Village Administration, Law, and Service teams, as well as Mayor Tomko for the privilege of working with all of you. I would also like to specifically thank Chief Brosius as well as Chief Zugan, and their teams for their tireless efforts and service to our Village. Our police and fire teams are truly the front line in this community, and their efforts not only protect us, but connect us to a sense of solidarity and pride.

I currently chair two posts for the Village, the Arts, and Administration and Compensation. I would like to recommend that Councilwoman Rogoff assume my post for the Arts Commission, and Councilman Muscenti assume my post for Administration and Compensation. I feel very strongly that they will provide sound guidance and leadership for those committees, and hold the appropriate backgrounds to support each of those groups.

I would like to state again the level of appreciation I have for the opportunity to serve in this capacity, and for the relationships that I have built here. This village has much work to do now and in the future, and I wish you all the best in pursuing the collective goals that we all hold dear; all for the betterment and solvency of our Village.

Thank You,

 

Robert E. Schleper, Jr., Ed.D

rSchleper

Income Tax Increase Unanimously Recommended to Council

Mayor Bill Tomko entered office in January of 2016

Mayor William Tomko, 2016

On Tuesday May 31, the finance committee of council, meeting as a committee of the entire council, (all council members were present and voting) voted unanimously to recommend to council putting the administration-proposed tax increase on the November 2016 ballot.

The residents of the Village will now have the final say in what kind of town they want Chagrin Falls to be.

The proposed income tax increase will be from the current rate of 1.5% to 1.85% (approximately 1/3 of 1 percent). This will result in a maximum tax increase of $35.00 on every $10,000 of wage income before applying the tax credit for taxes paid to other taxing communities. The tax increase will not apply to retirement income or passive income such as interest or dividend income. For residents living in Chagrin Falls and working in another taxing community, (which is the overwhelming majority of our residents), the current tax credit rate of 75% will remain unchanged and unlimited in amount. This proposed increase is projected by R.I.T.A. to generate $750,000 per year.

The use of these funds would be restricted to funding:

1. Permanent improvements

2. Infrastructure maintenance

3. Cemetery perpetual care

During the next five years, approximately 75% of the funds generated by the proposed tax increase will go towards road repair and maintenance. For a detailed listing of where the proposed tax increase will be spent see the Proposed Projects Spreadsheet where we have listed each proposed project by year and the reason why we are proposing to undertake the specific project.

While no one likes any tax increase, I believe the proposed tax increase is the fairest means to raise the funds required to finance vital capital replacements and maintenance projects. We are not asking for funding for nebulous projects as we have specifically identified the individual projects and stated the reason we are proposing to spend funds on it. Most identified projects can be seen by driving down the road and for those that can’t call me (247-8399) and I will show you the project.

There will be several council meetings (June 13 and 27) before this proposal goes to the Board of Elections for placement on the November general election ballot. At each of these council meetings there will be ample opportunity for public input on the proposed tax increase. If you wish to comment or have questions, I encourage you to come to the meetings.

 

Mayor Bill Tomko

Administration Proposes Capital Improvement Plan To Finance Meeting Tuesday May 31

Village Government consists of an elected Council and Mayor. This is the 2016 Council.

The Village Council Finance Committee is meeting as a Committee of the Whole on Tuesday, May 31 at 7:00 pm to discuss the Village’s capital needs and how these needs might be financed. The capital needs budget can be reviewed in its entirety here. The format will be an open meeting with public participation and an open question and answer session. There is a lot to cover and to consider. Accordingly a follow up meeting may be required. Also, some residents may want to discuss this proposal and will be unable to attend Tuesday’s meeting.

The capital maintenance and improvement budget is organized into three sections:

1. The first section sets forth specifically what we believe the village’s capital needs are by specific project and the year we propose doing the project. The far right hand column explains why we believe the project needs to be done. The projects are grouped by area. For example, all the road programs are grouped together, as is stormwater management etc.

2. The second section details projected budget cuts we are pursuing by changing some of the village operations. For example, moving to a new healthcare plan when our current contract expires, or implementing a comprehensive parking plan. The negative numbers in each year’s columns unfortunately reflect the remaining unmet revenue needs. This unmet need can only be resolved by declining to address some of the specific projects listed above or by a tax increase. See the Financial Review Committee’s report for their conclusions on the village potential to fill the funding short falls with savings from operations and also for their conclusions on the Village’s deferral of capital projects over the last few years

3. The third section details the Administration’s proposal to increase revenue and in it, we are proposing that council authorize the village to put an income tax increases on the November 2016 ballot for the voters to decide. With the reduction and elimination of both state aid and the estate tax, the choice is simple and stark, raise additional revenue or decide what does not get done; hence why we listed specific projects and assigned proposed dates to them. In the Administration’s view, it is up to the residents to decide what kind of town they want. The proposed tax increase will allow the village to fund its capital expenditures and restore prudent balances in the capital improvement fund. This will allow us to reestablish the minimum capital fund balance identified by the financial review committee on page 6 of their report.

The Administration is proposing an income tax increase and not a property tax increase as it does not affect those residents living on a fixed income. In addition, part of the increased tax will be borne by visitors to the village. The income tax only taxes wages and business income, NOT retirement or passive income. The increase we are proposing to Council is 0.35%, a little over a third of a percent and will take our rate from the current 1.5% to 1.85, which is still less than many other communities. The tax credit received by resident living in the village and working in another taxing municipality remains UNCHANGED at 75%. This credit is still much greater than many other communities. RITA has estimated that for the majority of our residents who live in the village and work in another taxing municipality, the proposed tax increase will cost them $43.75 per $50,000, which is less than a dollar a week. For an individual both living and working in the village or living in the village and working in a non-taxing township such as Bainbridge, the prosed tax increase will cost them $175.00 per $50,000 of taxable income. This proposed increase will raise $750,000 of additional revenue and in our judgement, adequately financing the village capital needs. My memo to council which more fully explaining out proposal can be seen here.

I’ve spent the last few months evaluating our current financial situation, creating a detailed list of specific capital projects and assigning proposed dates to them. It is up to the residents to decide what kind of town they want. As I said in the beginning, there is a lot here to think about, question and understand.

I hope you can join us next Tuesday to start this process.
Mayor Bill Tomko

Notice of Public Hearing: Cash Basis Annual Financial Report

March 1, 2016

The Cash Basis Annual Financial Report of the Village of Chagrin Falls for 2015 has been completed.

The Report is available for inspection at the Village Hall at 21 West Washington Street, Chagrin Falls, Ohio 44022 between 8:00 A.M. and 4:30 P.M.

 

David Bloom

Director of Finance