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Hall's Bill Empowering Townships Approved by General Assembly

The legislation now heads to the governor's desk
December 21, 2022
Thomas Hall News

State Rep. Thomas Hall (R-Madison Twp.) announces House Bill 501 that he introduced to empower townships across the state has been approved by the General Assembly during their last legislative session of the year.

“My experience as a former township trustee inspired me to craft this legislation in order to empower our local governments to be able to function as needed to support their local residents and communities,” Hall said. “I’m pleased to see it make it one step closer to becoming law here in Ohio.”

The bill addresses the following, including some amendments added to it by the Senate:

·         Simplifies the process townships must follow to donate unneeded property.

·         Allows townships to create a special tax increment financing (TIF) district with the goal of providing funding for any public or private property improvement project.

·         Clarifies that the Auditor of State’s fraud-reporting system to ensure that protections apply to all employees reporting unlawful activity occurring at the workplace are covered, not just civil service employees.

·         Clarifies townships are able to support broadband build-out.

·         Allows a board of township trustees to appoint a deputy fiscal officer when the office of township fiscal officer becomes vacant.

·         Allows a township fiscal officer’s assistant to receive compensation allowable under a township’s appropriation measurement as an alternative to the amount allowable under an estimate of expenditures provided to the board of trustees.

·         Allows a board of township trustees, as part of a local government deferred compensation program, to establish a designated Roth account feature or any other feature for retirement savings account contributions that are not tax-deferred.

·         Permits counties, townships, and municipal corporations to regulate small solar facilities.

·         Authorizes the treasurer or governing board of a subdivision that is a member of the Little Miami Joint Fire and Rescue District to invest interim money in bonds or other obligations of the fire district of which it is a member.

The legislation now moves to the governor for his consideration.