The recent Kettering Health Network move in Greene County had me thinking of what impact a new health campus might have on Montgomery County. What happens when doctors, who work at Kettering- want to move to Beavercreek- so that they won’t have to pay income taxes? A giant sucking sound? Possibly.
One of the reasons we see both the Greene and the Mall at Fairfield Commons right on the edge of Montgomery County is because RTA doesn’t extend service to either. It’s a racist way of keeping “bus people” away from the malls. That also means RTA, which depends on sales tax revenue, misses out on all that retail sales tax.
Most of the talk of “Unigov” or “Regional Government” has been about merging cities within Montgomery County for efficiencies. However, communities like Oakwood and Kettering just don’t want to play along. We have all these different taxing districts, with so many different tax rates. We have over 20 police chiefs- the whole thing is what happens when evolution is left unchecked- freaks of government emerge.
Maybe we should be considering merging Montgomery and Greene County instead? Expand Five Rivers Metroparks across the two counties, one street maintenance organization, one sheriff, and, maybe even a prosecutor that believes in handing out justice (and no, Mat Heck, I’m sure not talking about you). We have one sales tax that covers RTA, the Arts, and Parks and Rec. We have one income tax über county wide- that is divvied up per capita, with a kicker to any community that buys more services from the county- ie: building inspection, code enforcement, street maintenance, “economic development,” police, fire. As time goes by, we have at least one strong regional leader to project a sense of direction. Plus, our MSA becomes significant.
I don’t think anyone is as connected to County government the way they are to Municipal government- and that could be our ace in the hole. Your thoughts?