Cleveland Readies New Budget After Income Tax Hike

Cleveland City Council on Monday held a committee meeting to discuss the budget.
Cleveland City Council on Monday held a committee meeting to discuss the budget. [Nick Castele / ideastream]
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Cleveland will soon lay out how it plans to spend new revenues from the income tax increase passed last year, and some council members want to put money toward security cameras.

The half-percent increase in the income tax is expected to bring an extra $80 million a year into Cleveland’s half-billion-dollar budget. In the coming weeks, Mayor Frank Jackson will present his overall spending proposal for the city, and council will hold hearings on it.

Councilman Zack Reed wants to hire more police officers.

“The priority’s got to be safety,” Reed said. “I mean, you cannot have prosperity without safety.”

Reed and Councilman T.J. Dow want to see the city spend more money on neighborhood security cameras.

Council members have paid for the cameras out of their own discretionary funds, safety committee chairman Matt Zone said.

Zone said he would like to see the administration, rather than council, bear the cost of improving the wireless network to support those cameras.

“They have to go on the highest point, either in a high part of our city, or on a building, and erect an antenna to receive that signal,” Zone said.

Council is set to discuss the new budget in more detail at a public meeting in council's committee room on Feb. 17 at 10 a.m., according to a council spokesperson. Budget hearings are scheduled to start Feb. 21 in the committee room.

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