September 30, 2014

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Sheffield Lake mayor pushes for tax increase to fund safety forces

This home at 4780 Pinewood Drive in Sheffield Lake was damaged by a fire early Saturday morning. Janet Earnhart was critically injured in the blaze that killed 7 pets. EVAN GOODENOW/CHRONICLE

Sheffield Lake’s mayor is using recent fires, such as this one at 4780 Pinewood Drive, as examples of why voters need to pass an income tax increase. EVAN GOODENOW/CHRONICLE

SHEFFIELD LAKE — At a City Council meeting on Tuesday, Mayor Dennis Bring cited the recent fires and bank robbery in Sheffield Lake as examples of why the city needs to vote for a 0.5 percent income tax increase.

“This goes back to having money to have our safety forces be able to do their job,” Bring said at the meeting where he proposed the tax increase. If passed, the levy would give money to the Police and Fire departments. If not passed, the city might have to disband the full-time Fire Department and the residents’ insurance costs would rise.

“They’ll pay more for (insurance) than they would for the levy,” Bring said.

The levy would raise $500,000 annually and workers earning $50,000 each year would have to pay an additional $250. Despite the consequences of not passing the levy — namely cuts to safety departments — it lost by eight votes in November’s election and by 148 votes last May.

Bring is hopeful that the levy will go through, especially after a Chase Bank branch was robbed recently.

“It’s part of the reason we need more people on our force,” Bring said of the robbery, adding that there were only two police officers on duty when the robbery occurred.

Contact Anna Merriman at 329-7245 or amerriman@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter at @AnnaLMerriman.


  • boxer

    This is a threat being brought on by the mayor. If you look at the city’s financial budget, 90% of the tax revenue goes to the administration ie Safety forces and the administration. Sheffield Lake would be better off like Amherst and Sheffield Village with a part time fire/volunteer department. This would save the city hundreds of thousand of dollars generated from the taxpayers. This revenue could go to make the city that is deeply depressed and starving for better streets.

    Sheffield Lake is the highest Taxed based community in Lorain County. I am tired of being bullied by our past and current administration. WAKE UP SHEFFIELD LAKE AND TAKE A STAND!

    • Get it right.

      Sheffield Village has a full time fill department with 5 guys working 24/7. Amherst does not operate an ambulance. You can’t compare these two departments. Sheffield Lake fire already does a lot with a little. They provide great service with 3 guys a shift and the knowing that the public they service doesn’t think they should have a job. And to say they should go to a volunteer fire department… you pay for their families, and tell me why is it ok in our country for someone to risk their life for your families and be there at 3 am to save you having a heart attack or to take the 911 abuser to the ER for a hurt finger, for free? they deserve to be paid….IF they levy fails and they all lose their jobs, I hope you and your friends are the first ones at the station to sign on as a volunteer. I bet you won’t be.

  • oldruss

    Why an INCOME tax increase? When you tax income, you only tax those who actually work for a living. A lot of people don’t work for whatever reason. Better use a sales tax, so that everyone bears the burden of paying for essential services.

    And, don’t let Council spend this new revenue for anything but police and fire; and make sure Council continues to fund the police and fire at the same rate out of the general fund that it does now. Don’t allow Council to short-change these essential services because they have new revenue.

  • Publius Cuyahoga
  • me101

    Really, Mayor Bring?!! You are inviting crime by saying this and all you have said. Thanks, from the people who work in Sheffield Lake, you are putting them at risk. What you are saying is come to Sheffield Lake and commit crime! The patrolmen are doing a great job and you have made it harder. Way to use the bank robbery and the fire to your advantage. If you want to make a difference, get some new detectives in this city.! It’s not the man power,..