All posts by Robert

Public health advisory system

During today’s media conference, Governor DeWine announced a new public health county advisory system. Delaware County is listed as a Level 2, which means there is an increased exposure and spread, and a high degree of caution should be followed. This map will be updated weekly for continued guidance.

July Council Meeting

The July 7th Council meeting will continue to follow the virtual format.
See connection information below.
Tue, Jul 7, 2020, 7:00 – 9:00 PM EDT
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3723414069975938829

Fourth of July in Ostrander 2020

After much discussion, consideration, and heartache, the Ostrander Civic Association, with the assistance of the Mayor, is accepting the recommendation from the Central Ohio Mayors and Managers Association to cancel this year’s 4th of July Parade and Fireworks for the Village of Ostrander. With so much uncertainty concerning the gathering of large public crowds we feel it would be irresponsible to move forward with our annual celebration. The health and safety of our community is our first priority. We are exploring alternative options to celebrate our patriotism for this year. Any constructive public input would be welcomed. The birth of our great nation should be celebrated and we look forward to coming back in 2021 bigger and better than ever.

Ohio COVID-19 Update – Ohioans Protecting Ohioans

On Tuesday, Governor DeWine issued an Urgent Health Advisory in what he calls a new phase in Ohio’s battle against COVID-19 saying that the state is “moving from orders to strong recommendations.” The advisory, called “Ohioans Protecting Ohioans” is about learning to live with the virus.

Here are the details:

  • The new advisory incorporates six feet of social distancing; a limit of 10 people for mass gatherings; frequent hand-washing; and other sanitizing efforts. It incorporates all of the business orders about social distancing and sanitation, including employees wearing masks, as well as efforts to protect employees and efforts to protect the public.
  • It considers our most vulnerable Ohioans as those who can suffer the worst impacts from the virus. The order strongly recommends that high-risk Ohioans stay at home as much as possible. They should avoid places where they are likely to encounter a lot of people.
  • Our Urgent Health Advisory recommends (but does not require) all other Ohioans to stay at their place of residence when possible with the intent of lowering the rate of spread of #COVID-19.
  • While our orders have included limited travel restrictions, these will now be lifted. However, while unnecessary travel within or outside of the state of Ohio is still permitted, it is not encouraged.

Visit coronavirus.ohio.gov for more information.

Delaware County Assistance Programs

It is clear the COVID-19 pandemic will have both a short and long term effect on our nation.  A number of programs have been or are in the process of being rolled out at the state and federal levels, but I’d like to take this opportunity to share with you some of the local programs underway to immediately assist our Delaware County residents and businesses.  These local programs are made possible by the Delaware County Commissioners, the Delaware County Finance Authority, other elected officials, and leaders throughout the Delaware County community.

1.            Rent and Utility Assistance Program (RUAP) – The RUAP provides grants to eligible households of up to $500 to be used towards rent and necessary utility payments.  Eligibility is determined in part as Low-To-Moderate Income households within the County.  Necessary utility payments are considered to be: water and sewer, electric, and/or natural gas/propane.

2.            Small Business Assistance Program (SBAP) – The SBAP provides assistance to those businesses in need of consultant services on topics such as: general legal matters, financial consultations, human resources assistance, and SBA and governmental navigation assistance.  Ideal candidates for this program are businesses of up to 50 employees.

3.            Property Tax Due Date Extension – With the support of the County Commissioners, the County Auditor and County Treasurer are evaluating an extension of the due date for property taxes to be submitted.  A decision on this initiative is expected in the next few weeks.

Delaware County maintains and administers these programs and additional information can be found at economicdevelopment.co.delaware.oh.us/covid-19/

Business Assistance

Rent Assistance

RITA Tax Information

Some tax related information to share and some questions are answered below. Reminder, the filing deadline has been extended until July 1

  • House Bill 197: modified the “20 day rule” by allowing employers to withhold tax for the principal place of work municipality rather than the location where employees are working remotely due to the COVID-19 crisis.  The time frame for this relief is retroactive to the date Ohio declared a State of Emergency (March 9, 2020) and will terminate 30 days after the State of Emergency is lifted.  It was suggested the reason for this provision is to allow for “status quo” during the pandemic to ease the burden of employers tracking employees that are working remotely.The question was raised whether taxpayers working remotely while being withheld for the principal place of work can file for a refund. The legislation does not mention refunds. Some believe the General Assembly did not intend for refunds to be issued while others believe existing case law would support issuing requested refunds. The OML Tax Committee is planning to continue discussion on this topic on April 24, 2020.
  • Penalty and Interest: General discussion regarding the need for municipalities to adjust penalty and interest enforcement for balance due as well as payments for first and second quarter estimated payments due to the filing and payment extension to July 15. In addition, some municipalities are freezing or not charging any penalty and interest for the foreseeable future. Some municipalities have suspended collection and legal action.RITA has already made the necessary adjustments to penalty and interest for the extended filing deadline and estimated tax payments but will continue to enforce penalty and interest on prior year balances due. The Agency has added language to its billing statements advising taxpayers that are unable to remit payment to contact the Agency’s call center or create a service request through MyAccount.

    We are working with taxpayers who need monthly payment arrangements or additional time to make payments under their existing payment plans due to changing situations related to COVID-19. 

  • Payroll Tax Credit: No municipality is aware of a payroll tax credit and there was no change to employer withholding due dates.
  • Stimulus Check Taxability: At this time the consensus is the stimulus checks will not be taxable by municipalities.
  • Where can I find the HB 197 provisions in ORC 718?: The H.B. 197 provisions related to municipal income tax were passed in the uncodified section of the legislation, meaning that those provisions will not be codified into Chapter 718 or any other Chapter of the Ohio Revised Code. Those provisions are contained in Sections 28 and 29 of the legislation