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The monies collected from the estate tax are distributed by law, 36% to the State of Ohio and 64% to the taxing district (City, Township or Village) in which the decedent had resided and/or owned real property. For dates of death on or after January 1, 2001, the distribution is 70% to the municipality and 30% to the State of Ohio and for dates of death after January 1, 2002, the distribution is 80% to the municipality and 20% to the State of Ohio.
It is the Fiscal Officer's responsibility to account for all dollars received each year by the County and to issue warrants (checks) in payment of all County obligations, including the distribution of tax dollars. The Fiscal Officer is responsible for all County funds and maintains the official records of all receipts, disbursements and fund balances. Over a billion dollars is accounted for on an annual basis.
- It is the Fiscal Officer's responsibility to serve as the paymaster for County employees.
- The Fiscal Officer also distributes gasoline taxes, estate taxes, fines, and local government funds in addition to real estate, personal property and manufactured homes taxes.
- The Fiscal Officer is required by law to prepare the County's annual financial report.
Senior citizens and the permanently disabled are eligible to receive Homestead Exemption (reduction in real estate taxes) Any Ohio resident homeowner who is at least 65 years or totally and permanently disabled as of January 1st, in the year of application, qualifies for Homestead Exemption. Manufactured homes are now also included in the Homestead program.
There are income requirements to apply for this program.
The Fiscal Officer is the focal point in the County for issuance of licenses for dogs, vendors and cigarettes. The annual dog registration is a service designed to benefit the animal, its owner and the community. Vendor licenses authorize businesses to sell tangible property to the public and collect sales tax, a part of which is returned for use on the local level.
Under Ohio law, it is the responsibility of owners of manufactured homes (house trailers) to register their homes with the County Fiscal Officer for tax purposes. Annually, the Fiscal Officer's Office assesses each manufactured home and prepares a tax duplicate. Tax bills are sent to each owner semi-annually. The House Trailer Tax is distributed back to the local taxing districts in the same manner as real estate taxes.
Real Estate Assessment
It is the duty of the Fiscal Officer to see that every parcel of land and the buildings thereon are fairly and uniformly appraised and then assessed for tax purposes. A general reappraisal is mandated by Ohio Law every six years and an update every three years. This office maintains a detailed record of the appraisal on each parcel in the County, and these records are open for public inspection.
The Fiscal Officer's Office also administers the 2 1/2% Property Tax Reduction Law passed in 1979 for residential parcels and for all agricultural parcels on which there is a home site occupied by the owner.
Real Estate Tax Duplicate and Rates
Under law, the County Fiscal Officer cannot and does not raise or lower property taxes. Tax rates are determined by the budgetary requests of each governmental unit, as authorized by vote of the people, and are computed in strict accordance with procedures required by the State Department of Tax Equalization.
Annually, the Fiscal Officer prepares the General Tax List and Duplicate. Your tax bill is based on the tax rate multiplied by your valuation on this duplicate. This is your proportionate share of the cost of operating your local government including Schools, Townships, Villages, the County, etc.
Ohio law limits the amount of taxation without a vote of the people to what is known as the "10 mill limitation" ($10.00 per $1,000 of assessed valuation). Any additional real estate taxes for any purpose must be voted by County residents. Your "Tax Rate" is an accumulation of all these levies and bond issues.
The Fiscal Officer is the Sealer of Weights and Measures for the entire County (with the exception of Cleveland), thus protecting the general public from the possible loss which may occur from faulty measuring devices, such as scales and pumps. The Fiscal Officer is charged with the responsibility of insuring that all State laws relating to Weights and Measures are strictly enforced.