Revenue in Monroe County from the special County Option Income Tax used to support Youth Services is down by about 15-percent from last year. Nearly all of the dollars earned by the levy are in use this year and the decrease in funding means the council will have to choose between cutting services and increasing the tax.
Just last year, county council members voted to increase the Juvenile COIT levy by one-one-hundredth of a percent to total a .05 percent tax And already Councilman Vic Kelson said council members will have to consider another increase.
“The situation we have with the Juvenile COIT is very unique,” Kelson said. “That is the only funding stream we have for youth services and we’re going to have to make a decision about how best to manage it. Its a difficult choice in an election year.”
As an alternative to increasing the tax, council members could elect to cushion the loss using the juvenile COIT rainy day fund, but the money contained in it would not completely cover all expenditures.